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Mortgage Advice for First Time Buyers

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The Role of a Mortgage Advisor in Cardiff



In today's complex real estate market, obtaining a mortgage can be a daunting task. With numerous lenders, varying interest rates, and intricate documentation requirements, navigating the mortgage landscape can easily overwhelm prospective homebuyers. That's where a mortgage adviser in Cardiff can make a significant difference. In this article, we will explore the vital role played by mortgage advisers in Cardiff and the benefits they bring to the table.

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Mortgage Advice for First Time Buyers


We will advise and make a recommendation for you on a first charge mortgage after we have assessed your needs. You may request an illustration from us for any regulated mortgage contract we are able to offer you whenever we provide you with information specific to the amount you want to borrow following assessment of your need and circumstances.

Our advisers take all the hard work out of finding the very best mortgage offers available. Our advisers are fully CeMAP qualified and FCA Regulated through being appointed representatives of the Openwork Partnership.

In most cases we charge an administration fee payable on receipt of your Mortgage Offer. The total fee will be based on your personal circumstances, employment record and credit history. We will provide you with written confirmation of your fee prior to commencement of any chargeable activity. We will also receive commission from the lender.

There may also be Legal Fees and Valuation Fees payable as part of the wider process of obtaining a mortgage.

We are an insurance intermediary representing you, not any insurer. We will provide you with a personal recommendation after we have assessed your needs, limited to the insurance products we have available to us, as shown in our Insurance Proposition Summary leaflet.

We arrange your policy with the insurer on your behalf, you do not pay us a fee for doing this. In return, we receive commission from the insurer which is a percentage of total annual premium. This means that if your purchase one of these products we will receive commission in addition to any adviser administration fees you may be paying as part of mortgage-related services. The amount of commission will be disclosed separately should you purchase one of these protection products. In all case you will receive a quotation which will tell you about any fees relating to any particular insurance policy.

First  Time Buyers

There are several factors that determine how much a lender will lend. These include, but not limited to, your income, credit commitments, housing costs, dependant adults or children, the size of deposit or equity available & the mortgage term. Contact us today to get a no-obligation indication of how much you can borrow.

With a Help to Buy Equity Loan the Government lends you up to 20% of the cost of your newly built home, so you’ll only need a 5% cash deposit and a 75% mortgage to make up the rest. With London Help to Buy the equity loan can increase up to 40%. You won’t be charged interest on the equity loan for the first five years of owning your home. This scheme is only available on new build homes. For more information, please contact us.

The freeholder of a property owns the property and the land it stands on outright. You are responsible for all maintenance of the property and land.

A leaseholder owns the property for the length of the lease agreement, at the end of the agreement the ownership reverts to the freeholder. Leasehold properties are usually flats. The length of the lease can influence the property value, anything under a 70-year lease can sometimes be difficult to mortgage. You have the right to extend a lease if you have owned it for 2 years, providing the original lease was over 21 years, the cost of this will depend on the property. As well as the length of the lease you will also need to consider the cost of the service charge (maintenance of communal areas, repairs), ground rent, building insurance and any administration charges from the freeholder.

Conveyancing is the process of legally transferring home ownership from the seller to the buyer. If you are taking out a mortgage you will require a solicitor or conveyancer to do this. The legal work involves:

  • examining the contract and supporting documents and raising queries with the seller’s solicitor.
  • local authority searches.
  • checking "title register" and "title plan" at Land Registry.
  • checking flood risk.
  • water authority searches.
  • chancel repair search.
  • environmental search.
  • arranging exchange of contract and completion date.

An Agreement in Principle (or Decision in Principle) is the first step towards having your new mortgage approved. You will need to confirm to the lender your income, outgoings and what you require from your mortgage. The lender will use this information to assess whether the mortgage is affordable and complete a credit check. If you are successful, you will receive confirmation of this from the lender. An estate agent will want to see this confirmation when you are viewing properties to know you are a serious buyer who can afford the property you are looking at. If you require an Agreement in Principle speak to one of our advisers today.


Typically, at the end of your initial mortgage deal with a lender you will move on to their Standard Variable Rate. This may mean you are not on the most competitive deal; you may find your monthly Variable rates may increase, making your monthly payment more   expensive, however you can move onto a new deal. We can help you talk through your circumstances and advise you on the best option and deal for you moving forward.

You can remortgage at any point; however, your existing lender may charge you an Early Repayment Charge (ERC) to redeem your mortgage.

To discuss your circumstance in more detail and find out if remortgaging is both right and cost effective for you, talk to one of our advisers today.

ERC stands for Early Repayment Charge. Depending on the arrangement you have with your lender, there may be an ERC to be paid should you decide to repay part or all of the mortgage. Typically, ERCs are for the length of the fixed, discount or tracker rate you are applying for. Some mortgage may allow a specified overpayment allowance to allow you to make some overpayment without incurring charges.

Generally, this will not prevent you from getting a remortgage. Our advisors have great success in helping clients with adverse credit. There are several lenders that we work closely with who are more favourable to clients who have previously had trouble sourcing finance. Talk to one of our advisors today for further information.

The majority of lenders do not charge to value your property if you are remortgaging and some may also offer a free valuation when purchasing – this can be done online (desktop valuation).

For those who do charge the fees will be linked to the value of the property and can usually range from £100 - £2,000.

Buy to Let

A “Buy to Let” is when a residential property is purchased with a view to renting it out as a form of investment. Buy to Let mortgages are specifically designed for purchasing this type of investment property.

Compared to Residential mortgages, there several key differences with Buy to Let Mortgages that must be considered, including but not limited to the following:

  • Affordability criteria is based on Rental Yield Coverage, not personal Income and Expenditure.
  • Most lenders have minimum income requirements.
  • Buy-to-let mortgage rates are often slightly higher.
  • Overall borrowing costs can also be higher.
  • Most enders request a minimum level of available deposit.
  • Buy-to-let mortgages are often interest-only mortgages.

The key to accessing the best buy-to-let mortgage lies in obtaining expert advice at the earliest possible stage. Whether this is your first buy-to-let mortgage, or you are looking to expand existing portfolio, speak to us today to gain important insights into your available options.

Please see our Buy to Let Guide and Factsheet above.


Generally, you can include but not limited to the following

  • House in Multiple Occupation (HMO)
  • Let to Buy.
  • Student lets.
  • Holiday lets.
  • Multi-unit blocks.
  • New builds.
  • Freehold & leasehold.
  • Non-standard construction.
  • Studio flats.
  • Light refurbishment.
  • Semi-commercial properties.
  • Ex-local authority.

To discuss your circumstances in more detail and gain important insights into your available options – talk to us today.

Please see our Buy to Let Guide and Factsheet above.

The total amount you can borrow with a buy-to-let mortgage will be determined by several factors, including but not limited to:

  • Property value/purchase price.
  • Projected monthly rental income.
  • Your current financial status.
  • Your current employment and income.
  • The size of available deposit.
  • Credit history.

To discuss your circumstances in more detail and gain a no-obligation indication of how much you could borrow – talk to one of our advisers today.

Please see our Buy to Let Guide and Factsheet above.

Owning and renting property has an impact on your tax position. You must pay tax on any profit you make from renting out property. How much you pay depends on:

  • how much profit you make?
  • your personal circumstances.

Your profit is the amount left once you’ve added together your rental income and taken away the expenses or allowances that you can claim. You must contact HMRC if you have taxable profits from your property you rent.

Whilst we can help you find the right mortgage for your Buy to Let properties- you should seek independent tax advice. Each landlord will have different circumstances. Rental income, mortgage repayments, non-property related earnings, and any benefits you receive as well as whether property is held solely, jointly or in a company structure all impact on your tax position.

To discuss your circumstances in more detail and gain important insights into your available options – talk to us today.

Please see our Buy to Let Guide and Factsheet above.

Insurance and protection

Yes, this is strongly recommended. Reviewing your cover is essential to ensure that you have the correct amount of cover to fit your current circumstances. Failure to review your cover could result in the risk of you being under or over insured.

 If you have an existing Critical Illness policy- Insurers constantly update the comprehensiveness of their policies over time therefore it is best practice to review your policy regularly.

The best thing to do is to speak to one of our advisers today and they can guide you on who the best insurer & policy might be for your personal needs.

The cost of cover has not been impacted by the Coronavirus. Premiums are generally determined by your current health and other variables such as age, smoker status and the amount of cover you need. If you have any pre-existing health conditions, the cost of cover may vary. If you are generally in good health you can expect to get cover at a reasonable cost.

The best thing to do is to speak to one of our advisers today and they can guide you on who the best insurer & policy might be for your personal needs.

In general, there is no limit to the amount of life insurance or the number of policies you can hold. Insurers generally apply what’s called “automatic limits” on the amount of life insurance you can take with them.

Insurers are always looking to help their clients as much as possible, and we have seen many recently increase their automatic limits by up to 10% to ensure they can offer as much cover as possible.

The best thing to do is to speak to one of our advisers today and they can guide you how much cover you need based on your personal circumstances.

Yes - Most Insurers have adapted well to the situation and are operating as usual. Demand for Insurance is high at present - but cover is still available to those who are eligible. As ever, levels of cover will differ from person to person, and from provider to provider.

The best thing to do is to speak to one of our advisers today and they can guide you on who the best insurer & policy might be for your personal needs.

Generally, the Insurance claims process has three basic stages:

  1. Notification.
  2. Assessment.
  3. Insurance pays out.

At Affinity Financial we are more than happy to help our clients in every aspect of claiming on the insurance policy to ensure this process is as stress-free and seamless as possible

If we can help you in any way regarding a claim- get in touch with us today.




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Mortgage Advice for First Time Buyers