The documents you need to get a mortgage
With all of the paperwork involved, applying for a mortgage can seem like it may take forever. However, it doesn’t need to be a long and stressful process.
To help you out, we’ve put together a list of must-have documents that you’ll need for your own mortgage application when you are buying a property.
What documents are needed?
When you’re applying for a mortgage, lenders will ask you for a specific set of documents so that they can check your eligibility for a large, long-term loan. These documents tell the lender exactly how much money you earn, how much you currently spend, and whether you’re a low- or high-risk borrower.
The documents you must provide to a mortgage lender include:
● Photo ID, such as a passport or driving licence
● A P60 form from your employer
● Payslips from the last three months
● An SA302 form if you’re self-employed
● Bank statements from the last six months
● Utility bills
● Proof of benefits
Depending on who your mortgage lender is, you may need to provide further documents to prove your outgoings, income and more. They will outline their requirements early on in the application process.
Why are so many documents needed?
Banks must be careful about who is borrowing from them when such large sums of money are involved.
To make sure a loan for a property makes ‘business sense’ to them, the mortgage lender needs to thoroughly check your incomings and outgoings – such as household bills, insurance policies and childcare costs – before reaching a decision.
With most mortgages lasting 25 years or more, banks also need to plan for the future. They must consider the impact of fluctuating interest rates, employment changes and how retirement, for instance, will affect your ability to afford the property in question.
The documents they request from you help them to understand this.
Top tips for getting your documents in order for mortgage lenders
To make sure the process runs smoothly, here’s our advice for collating the required documents.
Be honest and accurate. Be completely honest when putting your application together, because if you fail to mention any credit cards and personal loans, it will slow up the process while the mortgage lender sifts through your credit history.
Make sure all copies are certified. A simple print-out of documents won’t usually stand up to scrutiny when applying for a mortgage. To make sure your documents don’t get rejected by the mortgage lender, try to get originals certified (signed and dated) by a professional person, such as your solicitor, accountant or doctor.
Required documents include:
- Latest payslip (online in original file format but not screenshots)
- Self-employed people must provide last two years’ HMRC tax calculations (printed from online account)
- Declaration of any additional income, such as child benefit, child maintenance, working & child tax credits, disability living allowance (physical copies)
- Bank statements up to 6 months (paper or online)
- Evidence of deposit (paper version)
The Post Office does a document validation service where they can identify and certify the documents.
Provide full contact details. Provide multiple email addresses and phone numbers to make sure the bank is able to contact you, your solicitor and your estate agent easily at any point during the application process. By making sure communication flows easily, the experience will be much smoother and easier for everyone involved.
Remember – provide as much information as you can. If in doubt, it’s better to provide too much information rather than too little. Make sure you ask the lender plenty of questions, especially if you’re unsure about what documents are needed.
This guide to mortgages was produced in collaboration with L&C Mortgages, the UK’s largest fee free mortgage broker and adviser.