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  • Writer's pictureMahmut Ates

Mortgage Basics Guide for First-Time Homebuyers

Updated: Jan 4

A young couple happily looking at a 'For Sale' sign outside their potential first home in a UK neighbourhood.


Buying your first home is an exciting milestone, but it can also be a daunting experience, especially when it comes to understanding mortgages. This mortgage guide is designed to demystify the mortgage process for first-time homebuyers in the UK, offering you the essential knowledge to make informed decisions.

What is a Mortgage?

A mortgage is essentially a loan that helps you finance the purchase of a property. The property itself serves as collateral for the loan. If you fail to make payments, the lender has the right to take possession of the property to recoup their money.

Types of Mortgages

There are several types of mortgages available:

  • Fixed-Rate Mortgage: The interest rate remains the same throughout a set period, making budgeting easier.

  • Variable-Rate Mortgage: The interest rate can change, usually in line with the Bank of England's base rate.

  • Interest-Only Mortgage: You only pay the interest each month, with the principal due at the end of the term.

  • Repayment Mortgage: You pay both the interest and part of the principal each month.

Mortgage Terms

  • Deposit: The amount you pay upfront. A higher deposit usually means a lower interest rate.

  • Loan-to-Value (LTV) Ration: The size of the mortgage in relation to the value of the property.

  • Interest Rate: The cost of borrowing the mortgage money, expressed as a percentage.

  • Mortgage Term: The length of time you have to pay off the mortgage.

Close-up of hands holding financial documents in a home office setting, symbolising preparation for a mortgage application.

The Mortgage Application Process

  1. Assess Your Finances: Determine your budget and how much you can afford to borrow.

  2. Check Your Credit Score: A good credit score improves your chances of being approved.

  3. Gather Necessary Documents: Including proof of income, identification, and bank statements.

  4. Choose a Mortgage Type: Decide which type of mortgage suits your financial situation.

  5. Find a Lender: Compare different mortgage offers from various lenders.

  6. Apply for a Mortgage: Submit your application and await approval.

Mortgage Adviser in a professional office setting, discussing mortgage options with a client, highlighting the importance of professional guidance.

Tips for First-Time Homebuyers

  • Save for a Bigger Deposit: The more you save, the better the mortgage terms you might get.

  • Budget for Additional Costs: Don't forget about stamp duty, solicitor fees, broker fees, and moving expenses.

  • Consider Protection Options: This can protect your family financially in unforeseen circumstances.


Understanding the basics of mortgages is the first step towards successful homeownership. As a first-time buyer, take your time to research, compare different mortgage products, and seek advice if needed. Remember, a mortgage is a long-term commitment, and choosing the right one can make a significant difference in your financial future.

Professional Help

The mortgage process can seem complex and daunting. At Filium Clerkson we work with you to understand your situation and make the mortgage process a breeze. Get in touch with us to start your financial journey!

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