Mortgage Broker Leeds

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Meet your Mortgage Broker in Leeds

Steven Hargreaves introduces the mortgage broker leeds.

What is the role of a Mortgage Broker?

You can arrange a mortgage yourself by walking into the local bank or building society, but you also have Mortgage Brokers that can help. The idea of a Mortgage Broker is to prevent you having to visit all of the different lenders to see where you can find the most suitable deal. Their job is to arrange a mortgage and I tend to go a little bit further, as I see it as getting that buyer from the start of their journey to when they’ve just picked the keys up.

When I meet with clients, right from the outset we’ll talk about the different lenders, different surveys and different mortgages available. Once we’ve got a Decision in Principle and a mortgage has been arranged, then my job is to keep my clients informed of exactly what’s happening by liaising with the solicitor, estate agent, lender and surveyor. We would do a Zoom or a Teams meeting and share that information with the client.

We also go through details, such as the surveys with First Time Buyers, as they haven’t been through the journey before. Ultimately as well as the mortgage, I would also arrange the protection in a lot of cases, which many brokers deem to be the most important thing. This means that if anything happens, whether that’s a slate blown off the roof or losing a job, they are protected, and we arrange all the provisions for that from start to finish.

What’s the difference between going to a Mortgage Broker like the Mortgage Co versus your local high street bank?

We’ve got hundreds of lenders we can look at, and thousands of deals. If you’re going to one lender, you’re assuming that lender is going to give you the most suitable deal, which in most cases, they’re not, there will almost always be a cheaper lender. The job of a Mortgage Broker is to find the cheapest deal and get the most suitable mortgage for the client.

What services does a Mortgage Broker offer?

As well as mortgage and protection advice, I contact clients on a regular basis to see if there is anything I can do to help them. For example, if they were on a five year fixed-rate, I would ensure that everything is still fit for purpose and value for money, and then certainly four to five months before their deal is up, I would contact them to avoid them going on the Standard Variable Rate (SVR). The SVR is ordinarily the highest rate that a lender offers.

If a client is thinking of moving, I’ll look at putting provisions in place for a Decision in Principle for an onward purchase, whether they’re looking for something larger, or smaller.

When should I see a Mortgage Broker?

Some clients see other lenders and brokers first, which allows them to compare the services that I offer. Equally, you really want to be doing it as early as you possibly can, because then you can prepare everything.

If someone is a First Time Buyer with a very thin credit file, and you’re not looking to buy for the next four to six months, you can work on that credit file before you’ve actually found a property.

I’d encourage people to take a number of advisers’ advice and shop around to find an adviser that they get on with, because there’s a lot of trust involved, so it’s important to see who you can work best with.

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You’re based in Leeds, but can you help somebody if they’re based elsewhere?

Pre-Covid the majority of my clients, maybe 95%, were in the Leeds area. Since lockdown we’ve had to learn to work remotely with Zoom, Teams and telephone appointments, rather than face to face. I’ve got a much broader base since this change, and in the past four weeks, only about 40% of the mortgages that I have arranged are in Leeds. 

The rest of my clients are literally all over the country from Southampton to Lincolnshire to Nottingham to Wales.This makes everything a lot easier and I’m now able to help people anywhere.

Why is Leeds a popular location to live and buy property?

Leeds is a vibrant city with some fantastic Michelin star restaurants and great bars. There are some fantastic shopping malls and out of town shopping centres. You’ve got every property type you can think of, from trendy city apartments, and on the outskirts you’ve got a lot of new builds. 

There are also a lot of old victorian terrace properties and the golden triangle, where there are some wonderful detached properties set in acres. There’s some wonderful countryside and everything from tiny one bedroom flats right to sprawling detached properties.

When was Mortgage Co founded and how long have you been in your role as a broker?

It was October 1995 I set up The Mortgage Co. I’ve been at Horsforth  since 1995, which is why I’ve got a lot of local clients. We’ve been there 26 years and still going strong.

Does it cost for an initial consultation with you?

Nothing whatsoever. Some people are incredibly nervous about how much it would cost for advice, but the service that I give to my clients is very much a hand holding service and once we’ve had an appointment, I’ll keep in touch through email, text or Whatsapp to help with any questions without charge.

There is no such thing as a stupid question if you don’t know the answer, my job is to talk you through the process. There is no charge for the consultation or arranging a mortgage, I get paid on completion. It’s so important to see a Mortgage Broker as early as possible, so that they can help you from the start, right through to completion.