Applying for a mortgage
If you look after the pennies then the pounds will take care of themselves, so the old saying goes. But even the most stringent of savers may reach a moment when they could do with a little extra cash – whether it's to start a business, extend a home, buy a car, consolidate other debts or turn that photography hobby into something more professional. And taking out a loan could be a viable solution.
The good news is that, these days, loan providers aren’t exactly in short supply. They include:
Nowadays, many loan applications are made online – but in certain cases, such as a couple applying for a joint loan, the paperwork may need to be physically signed for and posted back, rather than completed online.
When you apply for a loan, the lender will consider a long list of factors to make sure you're a reliable borrower. This includes checking your credit history – including any mortgages, credit cards, overdrafts and other loans you might already have – and how well you’ve kept up with repayments.
Other considerations include your employment status, income, how long you've lived in your property, whether you own your home, the loan amount and purpose, and perhaps even your bank statements, which prove income and give them a picture of your regular outgoings.
This information all goes into giving you a credit score, which gives the lender an idea of whether you're capable of repaying this particular loan. This can be calculated in many different ways, so even if you've been declined by one lender, you may be successful elsewhere.
Your application is then either approved, approved pending further information, reviewed before making a decision, or declined. If approved, you may be able to finalise the loan online, or you could be asked to sign and return a paper agreement. The funds will then normally be issued to your account – the lender will let you know how long this will take.
It could also be worth using a website that allows you to check your chances of being approved for a loan, so you know which ones you're more likely to be accepted for. Not only can this take the guesswork out of applying, searching in this way counts as a 'soft check', and doesn’t leave a mark on your credit report which is visible to lenders.
Before you apply for a loan, Experian can show you the personal loans you're more likely to be accepted for. This only counts as a 'soft check' and isn’t seen by lenders – so it doesn’t affect your credit report or score at all.
As a credit broker rather than a lender†, Experian uses your credit report, as well as information you provide about your requirements and financial circumstances, to show you personal loans and credit cards that are matched to you. This means you can see a personalised list of products that you are more likely to be accepted for, without affecting your credit score.
We are a credit broker not a lender†
With the free Experian account you’ll get: