You’ve got your deposit ready, and you know what you can borrow. What else, and who else can help boost your application?

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If you haven’t already, get your Decision in Principle (DIP).

Sellers will take you more seriously if they know you can get a mortgage. A DIP will give you a good idea of the size of mortgage you can borrow, plus you need one before you complete your full mortgage application.
What is a Decision in Principle (DIP)?

Apply for a DIP with the Yorkshire Building Society.

Takes as little as 10 minutes
Won’t affect your credit rating
Lasts for 30 days.



Where can I get some advice on getting a mortgage?

If you decide you’d like some advice about buying your first home, these are some of the people you could ask.

A mortgage specialist from a mortgage lender

A mortgage specialist has all the information you need to make the decisions that are right for you. They can only give advice on specific products from the lender they advise for. This is usually free, no obligation advice.

Mortgage broker

Brokers are dedicated mortgage specialists. They can work for themselves or for a larger company. They often charge for their services.

Make sure you confirm any fees before you talk to a broker, including whether you would still need to pay a fee if a mortgage deal fell through.

Independent Financial Advisor (IFA)

IFA can advise you on all types of financial products. They are independent of other companies and must give you impartial advice. They charge a fee for their services.

Do I qualify as a first time buyer?

First time buyer
A first time buyer is usually seen as someone who has never owned a property before. You don’t need to have paid for the property. If you inherited or only had a small share in a property, you won’t be considered a first time buyer.

If you’re buying with someone else, some mortgages especially for first time buyers, might need you both to be first time buyers.


Boost your chances of getting a mortgage

Your lender wants to know if you could be a creditworthy mortgage borrower, and there are few tricks to making yourself more attractive.

Lenders will want to see your bank statement so they can check what you spend per month and whether you have a handle on your spending.

Could you reduce your monthly outgoings?

Perhaps you have subscriptions you could do without.
Could you cut back on trips out or hobbies?
It could help your finances look better and save you money too.

Credit scores

All lenders will get a credit report on your financial history. Doing your best to improve your credit score could really help your chances of securing the mortgage.  

A credit score is represented by a three digit number up to 999. 

Generally, the higher the score the better.

Having a higher score can mean there are more credit products available to you such as credit cards, loans, and mortgages. It can mean you may be offered a lower interest rate too.

Lenders each have their own measures to decide if you are creditworthy, so just because one doesn’t want to lend to you, it doesn’t mean another won’t.

The types of credit check

There are two levels of credit check, a soft and a hard check.
A soft credit check is the name for a search that gives enough information for a lender to decide whether you could be successful in a full application. They also help towards checking your identity.
Soft credit checks don’t leave a trace on your credit report and other companies can’t see they have been carried out.
A hard credit check is carried out when a company wants a complete view of your credit history. Hard credit checks leave a record of their search.
This means a lender can see all the other hard checks that have been carried out. If another lender thinks you have too many credit searches, it can affect a lender’s decision about your suitability to borrow from them.
When you apply for a Decision in Principle a mortgage lender will carry out a “soft” credit check to make sure of your suitability to borrow. It can also be as part of their identity checks.

When you complete the full mortgage application a full review of your credit history, or hard credit check is carried out.

Does your credit report include any of these?

These are some of the reasons your credit check may not look as attractive as it could to a lender.
Having little or no credit history.
There may in inaccuracies on your credit report.
You aren’t registered to vote at your current address.
You have moved address a lot.
You have a County Court Judgement against you.
You haven’t kept up repayments to other credit agreements like late or missed payments.
You already have a lot of credit agreements in place.
You have made a lot of applications for credit.
You have overspent on agreed credit limits.
You are financially linked to someone who has a poor credit score.

How do I improve my credit score?

Some time before you apply for a mortgage it’s worth looking at your credit score and seeing how you can improve it over time with some adjustments.
Check for inaccuracies on your credit report and report them to the credit agency.
Register to vote.
Make sure you have been at one address for at least 3 years.
A County Court Judgement lasts for 6 years on your credit score, wait until it’s passed.
Keep up repayments and make sure they are on time every time.
Close any credit cards or other credit agreements you have that you don’t use any more.
Don’t make lots of application for credit.
Prove you are no longer financially linked to someone who has a poor credit score.
The content on this page is for reference and does not constitute financial advice.
For impartial financial advice, try MoneyHelper