Comparison Sites – How Do They Compare?

Here at Poole Townsend, we’re proud of our top quality customer service and the professional, yet friendly, approach we have when it comes to each and every one of our services. This is especially true when it comes to our mortgage team who have been providing advice to local customers for over 20 years. (We know they look too young, but they started early!)

We recognise there are certain things in life that can be a bit daunting – choosing the right mortgage is certainly one of them as it’s the biggest purchase most people will ever make. We see our job as two fold: firstly sourcing and explaining a range of appropriate products for your circumstances; secondly supporting you through the hurdle race that is securing the right mortgage. Our team can personally guide you through affordability and credit checks to underwriting, valuation and ultimately offer.

When reviewing mortgage products it's easy to be distracted by the headline rates that are advertised to entice borrowers (and of course earn comparison websites their commission fees), however, in reality a mortgage is a long term commitment and there are a lot of other factors that should be taken into consideration. How long is the tie-in? Can you afford to link your borrowing to interest rate changes? What happens when your fixed period ends? It’s all sorts of small variables in the products that can make it difficult to get a genuine, like for like comparison.

There are undoubtedly advantages in using online comparison sites as part of your mortgage research, as they can be useful in giving you an idea of the type of mortgage that might be right for you. They can also be good tools to use to educate yourself – for example, knowing the difference between a fixed interest rate and a variable interest rate, and understanding what an equity loan is. However, it’s worth baring in mind that not all products and providers are advertised on these sites which means you can’t get a full view of the market. Our experience and position in the market allows us to search a much wider market place based on your specific criteria and do what no comparison site can do, give you advice based on experience.

The comparison sites also tend to have a black and white approach to the application process. In contrast we can offer personal advice from the very beginning that can improve your chances of getting a mortgage accepted. For example, did you know that electoral roll registration affects your credit rating? Or that Lenders aren’t necessarily swayed by a 999 credit score - it’s what lies beneath in your credit file that carries more weight.

We are undoubtedly a little bit biased on this one but we really love to be put to the test, so why not pop in for a chat about your options. We can’t promise you success, but we will give you a coffee and a biscuit and we’re pretty sure you won’t get that offer from a website!

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