Mortgage guide:
The 5 Steps to Applying for a Mortgage

Whether you’re taking your first steps onto the housing ladder, or looking to remortgage, YBS makes the mortgage application process easy to understand. 

Here is how to apply for a mortgage in just 5 simple steps.

Step 1 – Get ready to apply

Before you start your application, have a look at how much you may be able to borrow, and what the monthly mortgage repayments will be.


How much can I borrow?

The first thing to look at is how much you’re likely to be able to borrow. Our borrowing calculator can help with this. It asks questions about your dependents, employment status, income and outgoings to give you an estimate. The more details you provide the more accurate the estimate is likely to be.

Other things that can affect how much you’re able to borrow are:

  • The amount of money you have for a deposit.
  • Your credit rating – we’ll check it when you apply for a mortgage so it’s worth making sure it’s good or taking steps to improve it if it’s not.
  • Any existing debts.
What fees and charges will there be?

When you’re buying or remortgaging a home there are various costs you’ll need to cover. If you’re paying for these out of your savings, it may affect how much you can put down as a deposit.

Depending on your situation, the costs may include the following:

What are the different types of mortgages?

Below are the different types of mortgages we offer. One of them is likely to be more suitable for you than the others so it’s worth looking into the various options.

  • Fixed rate mortgages – Your interest rate stays the same for the fixed rate period so you know exactly how much you’ll be repaying each month.
  • Offset mortgages – Instead of earning interest on your savings, you pay less interest on your mortgage.
  • Interest only mortgages – You only pay off the interest on your mortgage loan. The monthly repayments are likely to be lower but you’re not paying off the amount you borrowed.

To find out more visit our page about the different types of mortgages, or get advice from our qualified mortgage advisors.

What will my monthly repayments be?

Our repayment calculator will give you an idea of how much you’ll have to repay on your mortgage each month. To use it, you’ll need to know the approximate value of the house you want to buy or remortgage and how much deposit you’re planning to put down.

Where can I get more information?

For more help and details specific to your situation, please see our guidance for:

Helpful tips

Before applying for a mortgage, it’s best to:

  • Collate details of your income and outgoings for the last six months.
  • Find out your credit score and look at ways to improve it if need be.
  • Check the property prices in the area(s) you’re considering.
  • Get an estimate of how much you’ll be able to borrow and what the repayments are likely to be by using our mortgage calculators.
  • Start budgeting for your move.

Step 2 – Get an AIP

The next step, before you can complete a full mortgage application, is to get an Approval in Principle (AIP).


What’s an AIP?

An Approval in Principle is when we tell you we can offer you a mortgage and how much you’re able to borrow, based on the details you’ve provided up to that point. It doesn’t mean you have to commit to applying to a mortgage with us though, and it doesn’t affect your credit rating because our checks won’t show on your credit file.

How to get an AIP

The mortgage application process with YBS is really easy, and getting your Approval in Principal (AIP) only takes around ten minutes online. Or, if you’d like the support of one of our mortgage advisers, you can call us.

What our decision means

When you request an AIP, there are three possible outcomes.

  1. Approved

    This means you’ve been provisionally approved for a mortgage with us and we’ll tell you how much you’re able to borrow.

  2. Referred

    This means we need to do some further assessments on your application. If we need more details, you should hear from us within four working hours – usually by email. Once we have all the information, we’ll usually confirm whether or not we can give you an Approval in Principle and how much you can borrow within 24 hours.

  3. Declined

    Unfortunately, sometimes we can’t give an Approval in Principle. Our pages on lending criteria and income and expenditure give advice on how to improve your chances of getting an AIP.

Your details all ready for the next step

Once you have an approved AIP, you can complete a full mortgage application. You can do this by logging in online or, if you need advice on which mortgage deal is suitable for you, with one of our mortgage advisers over the phone. You won’t need to repeat any information from your AIP application as you, or our advisers can easily retrieve all your details.

Things to know about an AIP
  • An AIP lasts for 30 days, but if you need more time before making an offer on a property it’s easy to request another. If you requested your original AIP online, you can log in to resubmit the request and also make changes such as increasing or decreasing the amount you want to borrow.
  • By getting an AIP you’re not committing to applying for a mortgage with YBS.
  • When you get an AIP, our checks don’t appear on your credit file so it won’t affect your credit rating.
  • The property you’d like to mortgage must be in the UK and you must be planning to live in it.
  • If you’re married or in a civil partnership but want to apply in your name only, you’ll need to complete your AIP application on the phone.
Get an AIP

AIP Checklist

Before applying for an AIP, it’s best to double check the amount you’d like to borrow using our borrowing calculator.

Also have to hand:

  • Current and previous address details if you have lived in your existing property for under 3 years.
  • Details of each applicant’s employment details, such as salary, regular bonuses and overtime payments.
  • Any benefits received such as child maintenance.
  • Have a list of regular outgoings for all applicants such as loan repayments, credit cards and childcare.

Step 3 – Applying for a mortgage

When you’ve got an Approval in Principal (AIP), and you’ve either had an offer accepted on a property or you’re remortgaging, you’re ready to complete a full mortgage application


Choose your mortgage

Once your mortgage Agreement In Principle (AIP) has been approved, you’re ready to complete a full mortgage application. First, you’ll need to choose a mortgage deal from our range.

If you need help deciding which mortgage deal is best for you please call us.

Ways to complete your application
  1. Online

    It can take as little as 15 minutes online, and you can fill in a bit at a time and save it to complete later. Just log in using your customer number provided when you completed an AIP and select your application to get started.

  2. By phone

    If you’d like a mortgage adviser to help you with your application and help choosing the deal you can contact our call centre on 0345 166 9510.

What information you’ll need

You will need to provide some documents for the application. We may, for example, ask you to give evidence of your income, employment, pension or outgoings.

Have to hand details of the following:

  • Employees address
  • Existing mortgage details if you are remortgaging such as mortgage provider and account number
  • The property you’re buying or remortgaging
  • Your current mortgage or tenancy agreement
  • Your bank details you would like your mortgage for setting up repayment
Your details all ready for the next step

Once you have an approved AIP, you can complete a full mortgage application. You can do this by logging in online or, if you need advice on which mortgage deal is suitable for you, with one of our mortgage advisers over the phone. You won’t need to repeat any information from your AIP application as you, or our advisers can easily retrieve all your details.

Important things to know
  • An AIP lasts for 30 days, but if you need more time before making an offer on a property it’s easy to request another. If you requested your original AIP online, you can log in to resubmit the request and also make changes such as increasing or decreasing the amount you want to borrow.
  • By getting an AIP you’re not committing to applying for a mortgage with YBS.
  • When you get an AIP, our checks don’t appear on your credit file so it won’t affect your credit rating.
  • The property you’d like to mortgage must be in the UK and you must be planning to live in it.
  • If you’re married or in a civil partnership but want to apply in your name only, you’ll need to complete your AIP application on the phone.

Application Checklist

Make sure you’re ready to apply by considering the following ahead of time:

  • Be prepared to pay any up-front mortgage fees such as the valuation fee.
  • Start looking for a solicitor or conveyancer – you’ll need one even if you’re remortgaging rather than buying. Remember that some mortgage deals include free legal advice, and if you need help finding a solicitor you use our conveyancing service or speak to us over the phone.

Step 4 – We process your application

Once you’ve completed your mortgage application, the next step is to get a mortgage offer. We’ll aim to process your application and post a formal offer to you as quickly as possible – usually within 10-15 days. But there are a couple of ways you can help us ensure things go smoothly.


What to do
  1. Respond quickly to your mortgage underwriter

    Within three working days of you submitting your application, you’ll be assigned a personal case manager who’ll get in touch to confirm they’re processing your application. They may also request extra information if we need to verify your identity and income documents. The quicker you can respond to these requests, the quicker we can continue to process your application.

  2. Pay any outstanding fees

    If you haven’t already, pay your valuation fees as soon as you can so we can arrange a mortgage valuation on the property you’re buying or remortgaging. This fee is non-refundable, but some of our mortgage deals come with a free valuation. Also check you’ve paid any other fees – if there are fees outstanding it will slow the process down.

Your mortgage offer

Once the mortgage valuation’s complete, your application has been fully underwritten and you’ve paid all the necessary fees, we’ll send you a mortgage offer through the post. This confirms that we’ve agreed the loan for your mortgage. It explains the terms, and any special conditions, and gives you an illustration of your expected monthly payment.

It’s important to read all the details of your mortgage offer carefully before you accept it. If you have any questions, you’re welcome to ask us or your solicitor, who’ll also receive a copy of your offer letter.

Helpful tips

At this stage, it’s worth doing the following:

  • Double check the mortgage terms and cost breakdown in the mortgage offer.
  • Look into setting up buildings insurance for your new property if you’re moving home.
  • Make sure you have the deposit ready if you’re buying a new property.
  • Start discussing a completion date for your purchase with your solicitor.

Step 5 – Exchange & completion

This is the exciting final step when your agreement to buy the property becomes legally binding and you’re handed the keys.

Exchange contracts

Once everything’s in place, your solicitor and the seller’s solicitor exchange the contracts setting out the terms of your purchase. After contracts are exchanged, neither you nor the seller can pull out of the sale.

To be ready for the exchange of contracts, you need to have:

  • A mortgage offer in writing.
  • Agreed on a completion date with your solicitor.
  • Checked and signed the contract and returned it to your solicitor.
  • The deposit ready to send to your solicitor.
  • Buildings insurance in place.

Your solicitor will also need to make sure:

  • All legal searches are completed.
  • The valuation and any surveys have been completed.
Complete the sale

The completion of your purchase happens after the exchange of contracts. Sometimes it’s on the same day, but typically it’s seven to 28 days later. Completion is when the property is legally transferred from the seller to you. Once the seller’s solicitor has received the balance of the money owed, on top of your deposit, your purchase is complete and the property is yours – congratulations!

What happens if I’m remortgaging?

Once you’ve accepted the mortgage offer, your solicitor or conveyancer will handle the remortgaging process. They’ll arrange for funds to be transferred from your new mortgage lender to your previous one. And they’ll arrange for any extra funds (if you’re borrowing more) to be transferred to you. This is when a remortgage is complete and it typically happens a little faster than if you’re buying a new property.

Why is my first mortgage payment higher?

Your first mortgage payment is usually higher than your regular monthly mortgage payment because it includes initial interest. This is the interest charged from the day you complete to the end of that calendar month.

So if, for example, you complete on 10th August, the initial interest will be for 10th to 31st August. We’ll add this to your first regular mortgage payment, which we’ll take in September.

To help you budget for a higher first payment, we’ll send a letter to you three working days after completion confirming the amount you’ll need to pay.