Mortgage Offer - from Your Conveyancer’s POV

Updated: Aug 21

Mortgage in Principle Issued

This simply means you appear to meet the lender’s criteria for your chosen product and they “should” be able to offer you a mortgage.

Lender Valuation by Appointed Valuer

Often a desktop or drive by to ensure the property offers sufficient security and the price agreed is not over, or under, current market value. You can only borrow a certain percentage of the property value. The property is compared to similar properties locally. This step can take weeks to finalise.

A lender valuation is NOT detailed enough for the buyer to rely on and a Homebuyers Survey should also be obtained. A lender valuation is for the lender only and will not pick up on structural issues.

Issue of Mortgage Offer

Following your lender’s review of your application form, payslips, P60s and all information provided to them the offer is issued or refused. The offer is issued to borrower (and broker) and a special copy is issued to your conveyancer. This step can take weeks.

Conveyancers Copy Offer

This differs from your copy and the conveyancer MUST wait for their copy. They cannot use the borrower/broker version.

Conveyancers check the offer for any discrepancies and report back to the lender if any are found. This is called a lender referral.

Lender Referrals

The conveyancer reports the issue to your lender and waits for their response. The Underwriter takes a view as to whether there is a security issue and if loan can proceed. A response can take weeks. The mortgage offer may need to be amended and reissued. To avoid a referral ensure no errors are included in the mortgage application forms. Ensure you advise your broker and conveyancer about issues such as cash gifts.

Change of Circumstances

If your circumstances change after submitting the mortgage application form you are required to tell the lender. For example, you lose your job or your income or expenses change. You will breach the lender’s terms if you do not inform them. If they discover this they may withdraw the offer or take repossession proceedings.

Signing the Mortgage Deed

Having a mortgage offer in place does not mean the conveyancing process has concluded. Your conveyancer is most likely still dealing with enquiries with the other side. You also need to sign (in the presence of an independent witness) the mortgage deed and return to your conveyancer. Do not get a family member to witness this.

Requesting Funds

Once the offer is issued you are still NOT guaranteed the mortgage monies. Your conveyancer needs to apply for the funds and give the lender 3-5 working days notice whilst also certifying that the conveyancer is NOT aware of any discrepancies AND the property title is sufficient.

Conveyancers then wait for lender confirmation of release of funds before proceeding. If your lender’s valuation or credit checks have expired in the meantime the lender cannot release funds.

If your lender releases the money too late on the completion date, and the banking system has closed for the day, then your conveyancer cannot complete and you are in breach of contract and may need to pay compensation.

To avoid issues on completion conveyancers usually draw funds down the day before completion. You will be responsible for daily interest from funds release.

As with most of the conveyancing process, what seems simple from the outside, hides a complex process underneath.

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