Mortgage advisors guide you through what for most people will be the most significant financial decision of their lives. A good broker’s advice is invaluable and can have a long-lasting positive impact on your financial situation. Similarly, the damage a poor adviser can do to your long-term financial health can be astronomical. Before you sign anything, look for these tell-tale signs in your mortgage advisor to ensure you are receiving nothing but professional advice from an experienced and conscientious advisor.
They Have Referrals
Good mortgage advisors often have a strong set of online reviews. There are apps on the market, for instance, which allow you to easily compare reviews of mortgage advisers. There are also awards that reward advisers with the highest level of service feedback and can be another great place to start – although it’s worth noting that many excellent advisers don’t enter themselves for awards.
They Are Regulated
Good mortgage advisors publicly declare that they are authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and can demonstrate this by citing their FCA number.
The FCA was set up to regulate the UK’s financial services market and its mission statement is to ensure companies remain honest, fair and effective. Brokers who are authorised by the FCA are obligated to work in your best interests, and to demonstrate this periodically to the regulator.
Companies become authorised to trade by the FCA after they have submitted themselves to the regulator and met its requirements. Therefore, it will usually be the case that any mortgage broker you speak to who is not authorised by the FCA has either not met the requirements, or is currently undergoing the authorisation process, or has chosen not to become authorised. In each case, you should proceed with caution.
They Ask Pertinent Questions
A good mortgage advisor will thoroughly evaluate your repayment capabilities before recommending a product. This means asking pertinent questions about your household finances and professional situation.
A good mortgage adviser will ask questions about your credit rating, the length of time you expect to live in your home, your outstanding debts, and the type of property you plan to buy. They will then take these answers to calculate what mortgage product would be best for you, and come back with several product options, with clearly explained reasons why they selected these products based on your answers and financial situation.
They Are Excellent Communicators
The best mortgage advisors keep you updated and informed at every stage of the process and are readily available should you have any questions or require clarification. Even if it is just a call to say that everything is proceeding on schedule, truly excellent advisers will keep you in the loop.
This communication should extend to the whole duration of the mortgage. If a better deal or rate becomes available, a good mortgage adviser would let you know and explore how the product could benefit your financial circumstances.
The best mortgage advisors are the ones that consistently make your interests their top priority. They will clearly demonstrate this in every aspect of their service. If at any point you feel like your advisor is not acting with your best interests at heart, then it might be time to look for one that will.