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Switching mortgage provider

Tell us about yourself and our broker partner Mojo can help you switch mortgage provider...

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Switching mortgages

There are many reasons you may want to switch mortgage, but the most popular is to save money.

Switching mortgages is known as remortgaging when you do so with another lender. You can also switch mortgage deals and stay with the same lender – this is known as a product transfer.

How to switch mortgage deals

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Can I switch mortgage providers?

It depends on your current circumstances. A new lender will need to carry out the same affordability checks and credit searches as when you first bought your home. 

People in certain situations may not always be able to remortgage immediately. For example, if your financial circumstances or credit score has declined, or if your property has fallen into negative equity.

In this case, you may still qualify for a product transfer. This is where you change products with your current lender. Your existing lender may not carry out additional mortgage affordability or credit checks if switch mortgage deals to another of their own. So as long as you’ve kept on top of your mortgage payments, you might be able to secure another mortgage deal with them.

But this isn't always possible if the interest rates available to you have risen dramatically. This may mean you're unable to meet affordability for the same mortgage again, even if your personal circumstances are the same.

If you're struggling to move mortgages to both new and your existing lender, it's best to seek the advice of an experienced mortgage broker.

Is a deposit required?

Sort of, although not necessarily a cash deposit. When you remortgage, the equity in your home acts as the deposit. Equity is the percentage of the value of your home that you currently own. If you don't have much equity, the remortgage rates offered won’t be as competitive.

You’re also unlikely to be able to increase your borrowing if you only have a small amount of equity. But it's sometimes possible to offer a cash deposit on top of your existing equity to get the best mortgage rates available to you.

Why might you switch mortgage providers?

There are many reasons people may change mortgage provider, but some of the most common ones are to:

  • Get a better mortgage rate, saving money on your repayments - when you come to the end of your fixed or introductory rate period, you're moved on to the lender's standard variable rate (SVR) which is often higher than other mortgage deals in the market, so people often switch at this point

  • Extend your borrowing further, either when moving home or as an alternative to a personal loan

  • To enjoy more flexible terms such as overpaying your mortgage, taking a payment holiday or offsetting your interest with an offset mortgage

  • Switch to a fixed or variable deal – if you're currently on a variable rate mortgage and your rate is subject to change, you may want to switch to a fixed deal so you can be sure what your payments will be for a set period. Alternatively if you currently have a fixed rate mortgage, you may want to switch to a variable deal if you think rates may fall soon.

  • Take advantage of a lower loan-to-value (LTV) deal – if the value of your property has increased, this means your equity has also increased. This might mean you can get a lower LTV mortgage which usually comes with better mortgage rates.

When to switch mortgage providers

If you want to switch mortgage providers, it's often worth looking at options around six months before the end of your existing deal. Most mortgage offers are valid for six months so you can secure a new deal and switch when your current deal ends, avoiding both the SVR and any ERCs.

But if you're already on your lender's SVR, you won't face ERCs if you want to switch.

If you want to switch before your existing deal ends, make sure you're aware of what fees will apply to remortgage early and check that the savings you'll make justify the cost. It can be worth consulting a fee free mortgage broker in this situation so you understand all your options.

What fees are involved with changing mortgage providers?

Exit fees

Also known as a deeds release fee or mortgage completion fee, this is charged by some lenders to close your mortgage account. This charge typically applies no matter whether your deal has ended or not.

ERC (Early Repayment Charges)

Unless you're on your lender's SVR, you're likely to need to pay ERCs to leave your mortgage deal. This is generally charged as a percentage of what you still owe and can be very costly, especially if you have years remaining on your current deal.

Arrangement and booking fees

Not all lenders charge arrangement fees, but some banks and building societies will do.

Valuation and conveyancing

Your new lender will instruct a new valuation to gauge the current value of your property. Solicitors will also still have to carry out conveyancing and deed changes on your behalf, much like when you took out your original mortgage.

Many lenders offer fee free remortgages as an incentive to switch to them, meaning that valuation and legal fees won't always apply. Remember to compare mortgage deals across the market to make sure you get the best terms for your circumstances!

When is it not a good idea to switch mortgage providers?

There are situations which might mean it's not the right time to switch mortgage deals, some of which are listed below.

However, lender criteria are very complex so it’s can be worth having a conversation with an experienced whole of market mortgage broker before you rule it out completely.

  • The ERCs are high unless you’re already on an SVR, the chances are you would have to pay ERCs to leave your mortgage deal. Work out the cost of these versus the savings you'd make by leaving your deal early as in some cases it may be better to wait.

  • Your financial circumstances are different if your financial circumstances have changed for the worse, it may not be possible to meet the mortgage affordability requirements of a new lender - especially if rates have also risen since you took out your original mortgage.

  • Your property has fallen in value if your property has dropped in value since you bought it the LTV (loan to value) of your borrowing may have risen. With a higher LTV the rates available to you are less competitive, so it may not be the best time to remortgage your home.

  • You've had recent credit issues if you’re approaching a completely new lender, they'll want to be sure that your credit record is in good shape. Those with more recent credit issues will be perceived as higher risk, which can make it more difficult to find a deal.

  • You have a small mortgage balance – if you have less than £50,000 left to repay on your mortgage, switching to a new lender won’t necessarily be beneficial. The costs involved with taking out a new remortgage deal are likely to cancel out the savings you would make by switching to a new deal at this point in your mortgage term.

What to consider before switching mortgage providers

Before making the decision to switch it’s important to consider the following:

  • A product transfer is typically easier and cheaper to arrange, so make sure your current lender can’t offer you a more competitive deal before you settle on switching mortgage lenders

  • How much your property is currently worth, or more specifically, the equity you have built up and whether it will reduce the LTV (loan to value) of your borrowing enough to positively impact the latest mortgage interest rates available to you

  • Whether your financial circumstances or credit record have declined since you took out your original mortgage deal

  • Whether your existing deal has high ERCs that would reduce the benefits of switching. Your lender will be able to advise you about any charges that may apply

Kellie Steedquotation mark
When you're considering switching mortgages, timing is the most important factor. Your current circumstances will determine which deals are available to you, and therefore how much you could save.
Kellie Steed, Mortgage Content Writer

Switching mortgage provider FAQs

Is it worth switching mortgage providers?

It really depends on your exact circumstances. There are a lot of factors that contribute to whether or not a remortgage is right for you, and timing is key to this. 

Switching to a new deal can save you money on interest, afford you more flexible terms, such as the ability to overpay, or even allow you to borrow more, but this won’t be true for everyone, so it’s important to fully understand your choices.

If you’re unsure, speaking to a knowledgeable online mortgage adviser can help you make the right decision for you.

How long does it take to switch mortgage providers?

A typical remortgage takes around four to eight weeks to complete, however, it can be slightly quicker or take longer than this, depending on the complexity of the case.

If you’re simply transferring your mortgage to a different deal with the same lender (a product transfer) it is usually much quicker.

Can you switch your mortgage at any time?

You won’t usually be able to remortgage or do a product transfer within the first six months of taking out your mortgage, but you have the choice to switch mortgages at any point after that. 

Remember that if you are currently in a fixed-rate mortgage deal or within the introductory rate period on a tracker or discount deal, you will likely have to pay ERCs (early repayment charges) to leave the deal before the term has ended, however.

How is my property valued when I switch my mortgage rate?

When you switch mortgage providers, the new lender will want to do a full valuation of your property, similarly to the one that was carried out before you bought it. This is to determine its current market value, which may have risen or fallen since your purchase. If you opt for a product transfer with your existing lender, they won’t usually need to do a new home valuation.

Can I switch to a new mortgage deal and change my term at the same time?

Yes it’s possible to change your terms in a number of ways when you remortgage, for example, you might want to switch from an interest-only to a repayment mortgage, from a fixed-rate to a tracker rate, or to a deal with more flexible terms, such as an offset mortgage. 

It’s even possible to change a residential mortgage to an investment rental property by remortgaging to a buy-to-let mortgage, if this suits your circumstances. So long as you meet the criteria of the new lender, you can generally choose the terms that suit your needs. 

Can I remortgage a home I’ve bought through a government scheme?

Generally, yes you can, but it will depend on which scheme you used and your circumstances. Not all lenders offer remortgages to those applying through government home ownership schemes, and those that will are usually the same lenders that also offer mortgages to this type of applicant.

  • Shared ownership mortgages can usually be remortgaged based on the value of your share of ownership.

  • Right to Buy mortgages can also generally be remortgaged, but this can be more complex. Depending on when you bought the property, you may not be able to make any changes for a defined period or may have to pay off your equity loan in order to do so.

How often should I remortgage?

There are no set rules about how often, or even whether you should switch your mortgage deal at all. The best time to do it is typically when your current deal comes to an end, or when it otherwise makes financial sense to do so.

It’s also worth bearing in mind that if you keep leaving deals early and paying ERCs in order to get the best mortgage interest rate, the fees paid over the lifetime of the mortgage will likely outweigh the benefits you get from changing mortgage deals in the first place. Seeking advice is the best way to make sure switching your mortgage is in your best interest.

Last reviewed: 21 December 2023

YOUR HOME/PROPERTY MAY BE REPOSSESSED IF YOU DO NOT KEEP UP WITH YOUR MORTGAGE REPAYMENTS.

The FCA does not regulate mortgages on commercial or investment buy-to-let properties.

Uswitch makes introductions to Mojo Mortgages to provide mortgage solutions. Uswitch and Mojo Mortgages are part of the same group of companies. Uswitch Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) under firm reference number 312850. You can check this on the Financial Services Register by visiting the FCA website. Uswitch Limited is registered in England and Wales (Company No 03612689) The Cooperage, 5 Copper Row, London SE1 2LH. Mojo Mortgages is a trading style of Life's Great Limited which is registered in England and Wales (06246376). Mojo are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and are on the Financial Services Register (478215) Mojo’s registered office is The Cooperage, 5 Copper Row, London, SE1 2LH, and head office is WeWork No. 1 Spinningfields, Quay Street, Manchester, M3 3JE. To contact Mojo by phone, please call 0333 123 0012.