Mortgage application guide
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Lending criteria, terms and conditions apply. Over 18s only and Republic of Ireland residents only. Mortgaged property must be in Republic of Ireland. Security, buildings insurance and life cover required.
It all starts here
We’ve put together this simple step-by-step guide to help you understand how we deal with a mortgage application at every stage.
There are four key stages to the mortgage application process.
Our mortgage team will thoroughly assess your application and any supporting documents to build up an overall picture of how you manage your finances. We want you to take out a mortgage with us but need to make sure you don’t overstretch yourself financially, so this is an important part of the mortgage application process.
Agreement in Principle
Before you begin your mortgage application, you can get an indication of what we may be able to lend you by completing our online Agreement in Principle.
How we assess your application
We look at a number of factors to make sure you’ll be able to afford the size of your loan. We’ll take into account how much deposit you’re putting down, your income, household bills and outgoings, savings and any other financial commitments you may have.
To help us understand your financial position clearly and move your application forward, we will ask you for additional supporting documents, including your payslips and bank statements. If you’re employed, these may include your payslips or up to three months’ bank statements, depending on the type of mortgage you have chosen. If you’re self-employed, we may ask for up to two years’ of accounts.
Completing your assessment
Once our team has assessed your application, checked any additional documents and are confident you’ll be able to meet the repayments, we then move to the next stage - Offer.
Quick tip: At this stage you could consider which solicitor you will appoint to act on your behalf. If you’re remortgaging to Ulster Bank, we will appoint our panel solicitor, so there’s no need to find your own.
Once your valuation can be completed, we carry out our final checks and will send a copy of the valuation to your solicitor. If the valuation shows a decline in the value of the property from your agreed Purchase Price, or the Estimated Value you provided on your application, then the Bank may decide not to proceed with this mortgage and may withdraw your Loan Offer, or may proceed on the basis of a reduced amount. This unfortunately introduces an element of uncertainty into the home buying process. However this uncertainty is unavoidable in current circumstances where the Bank must adhere to social distancing guidelines which may make valuations unavailable at this point in time.
Changing your offer before completion
We make our offer based on the details you provided in your original application, such as the property purchase price loan amount and your specific mortgage product. If you want to make any changes to these, now is your final opportunity to discuss them with your Mortgage Specialist before completion.
Whether you’re buying or remortgaging, at this stage we ask an independent valuer to check that the property is priced correctly and suitable for mortgage purposes. You’ll be given a choice of what level of inspection you would like.
A Standard Valuation is the minimum check we require to progress the mortgage and is required by law. A surveyor will inspect the property, highlighting obvious major defects that could affect the value, then compare the property to similar ones, taking age, condition and location into account. This information is used to write a valuation report, called a Standard Valuation.
Icon expand Remortgaging
If you’re remortgaging, there are a number of valuation options available. We’ll contact you to discuss the most suitable one for you.
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If you’d prefer the reassurance of a more detailed survey, you can choose to pay for one of the following two options:
- The Homebuyer’s Report is a more detailed report, with advice on defects affecting the property value, and details of any likely future maintenance or repair costs.
- A full Buildings Survey (previously called a Structural Survey) is useful for older, larger or non-traditional properties. It provides a thorough inspection and detailed breakdown of the property condition including any structural defects, necessary repairs and maintenance advice.
Icon expand Choosing the right survey
It’s a good idea to chat with your Mortgage Specialist about the most relevant survey for the type of property you plan to buy.
Icon expand Valuation result
The valuation report is always sent to your solicitor. In their report, the surveyor will provide their independent opinion on the value of the property. If the report highlights that the property needs repair work, we may make you a mortgage offer, but hold back an amount until the repairs are completed.
Icon expand If the valuation is unsuccessful
Sometimes the surveyor may recommend that the sale price is higher than the actual property value, and downgrades the valuation. This can be quite common and may be down to many different factors including over pricing due to market conditions or structural issues with the property.
We don’t want you to buy a property that’s been over-valued, so we’ll contact you to discuss the different options open to you. These may include asking the seller to reduce their price or you increasing your deposit so you need a smaller mortgage. Or you may decide on reflection that this particular house purchase isn’t for you.
If you are buying a property, once your solicitor has made all of their checks, they will agree the dates for exchanging contracts and completing the purchase with the seller’s solicitor. On exchange of contracts, your deposit is paid to the seller. You’ve now committed to buy the property.
The last step is completion itself. This is where , if you are remortgaging, we either release the funds to you or to your previous lender to pay off the redemption amount and clear your old mortgage.
If you’re buying a new property, it’s when your solicitor sends us the Certificate of Title and in return we release the funds to them. They then pass those funds to the seller’s solicitor. Once the seller has received the money, the house purchase is complete. You get the keys to your new home. Congratulations.
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