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What is a home mover mortgage?

A home mover mortgage, also known as a remortgage, is a mortgage deal designed for people moving from one house where they already have a mortgage to another property where they will need a new mortgage to cover the purchase price.

You don’t always need to remortgage when you move home: you may be able to use your existing mortgage to finance the purchase of your new property. This is known as porting your mortgage. Under the right circumstances, you can increase or decrease the size of your existing mortgage to provide the amount you need to buy your new home. 

However, if you cannot port your existing mortgage when you buy your new home, you need a home mover mortgage.

How to compare moving home mortage deals

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Who is Mojo?

Mojo is a free online mortgage broker. We partner with them so you can get all the mortgage support you need in one place.

Mojo will find out about your circumstances, check your eligibility, and search across the whole of market to help you secure the best mortgage for your circumstances.

An expert will be on hand to offer help and advice and you will be supported through each step of your mortgage application.

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What are my mortgage options when moving home?

If you cannot port your existing mortgage when you buy your new home, you need to get an Agreement in Principle from another lender that offers home mover mortgage deals. 

If you decide to take out a new mortgage when you move house, you can often choose a new deal with the same lender; this is known as a product transfer and only counts as new lending if you need a bigger loan (or further advance). 

However, you will generally get a better deal by remortgaging with a rival lender.

When comparing moving house mortgages, it is important to consider the total cost, including fees and charges for exiting your current mortgage and setting up a new deal. Even if a remortgage deal offers a much lower interest rate, it may still cost you more overall due to the charges you have to pay to switch.

You also need to consider factors including the type of interest rate - fixed, tracker or discount - and the terms of the new deal, such as how long you have to keep it before you can switch again without incurring penalties.

Porting your mortgage

Some lenders let you move your existing mortgage to a new property when you move house. This is called porting the mortgage.

It can be a cost-effective option, especially if you face high early repayment charges to switch to a new lender or you’re on a lower interest rate than you can find elsewhere when you come to move.

However, not all mortgages are portable, so you should check your terms and conditions and what fees are involved in the porting process. 

As porting your mortgage means going through the application process again, the lender may refuse your request if:

  • Their lending conditions have become stricter

  • You earn less

  • You are now self-employed

  • You have missed repayments on your mortgage or other borrowings

  • You have taken out more credit or loans

  • You need to increase your mortgage to buy a more expensive home

Home mover mortgage

When you move home, you can remortgage to a new deal with a new lender or do a product transfer with your existing lender (with a further advance if you need a larger loan). 

Remortgaging is a straightforward process; around a third of the mortgages approved in the UK each year are home mover mortgages.

The first step is to use our affordability calculator to check what you could borrow.

Then you need to find a deal and get an Agreement in Principle from the lender offering it.

Home mover mortgages come in many forms, including:

  • Fixed, variable, tracker, discount or capped deals

  • Interest-only or repayment deals

  • Offset or flexible mortgages

Remember that you will usually have to pay fees for taking out your new mortgage, including product, application and valuation fees. So it’s essential to factor these in when working out the total cost of switching.

As with any mortgage application, you’ll also need a good credit record and to pass the lender’s affordability checks.

Borrow more

Borrowing more by increasing the size of your existing mortgage is known as taking a “further advance” or additional loan – often at a different interest rate to the one you’re paying on your primary mortgage.

Most lenders offer this facility as long as you can show you will be able to afford the extra repayments, and the size of the overall loan does not exceed 85%–90% of your property’s value. This loan includes both the primary mortgage and further advance.

You’ll usually be asked why you want the money, with most lenders viewing home improvements that will increase the value of your home more favourably than buying a new car, for example.

You’ll also need to:

  • Be up to date with your mortgage repayments

  • Have enough equity to allow you to borrow more

  • Have your home professionally valued

  • Have a good credit rating

  • Have enough spare income to afford the extra payments easily

Moving to a more expensive house

If you’re moving to a more expensive house, you’ll probably need a bigger mortgage - unless you have savings available to increase the size of your deposit by the required amount.

You may be able to increase the size of your existing mortgage by asking your lender for a further advance. 

Depending on your circumstances, you may also be able to arrange a bigger home mover mortgage with a rival lender.

Either way, you’ll need to pass the lender’s affordability checks to be approved to borrow a larger amount. 

Moving to a cheaper house

You won’t need to borrow more if you are downsizing or moving to a different area where property is cheaper.

But you’ll still need to choose between a further advance and a remortgage deal with a new lender. 

Say you’re selling a home worth £200,000 on which you have a £100,000 mortgage and moving to a property worth £120,000. In this case, your options include:

  • Porting your existing mortgage, thus avoiding the fees involved in switching, and using the £80,000 difference to invest or to overpay on your mortgage according to its terms

  • Remortgaging and using the £80,000 as your deposit - leaving you with a very small mortgage to pay off

  • Remortgaging and using the £80,000 for home improvements

Equity and moving house

Equity is the value of the percentage of your home that you own outright. So say your home is worth £300,000, and your mortgage balance is £150,000, the value of your equity is £150,000. 

The equity you own in your home can go up in two main ways:

  • As you pay off your mortgage, the percentage you own naturally increases

  • When house prices rise, the amount of equity you have also goes up

When you move home and take out a home mover mortgage, the amount of equity you have is often a major factor in determining the size of the mortgage you can get and on what terms.

Can I use equity as a deposit when moving house?

Yes. After you have paid off your old mortgage, you can use theequity in your current home - or in other words, any money you have left from the sale - as a deposit on the new property.

The amount you have to put down as a deposit will affect the mortgage deal you can get, with lenders generally reserving their best deals for borrowers only looking to borrow 65% or less of a property’s value. 

So it may be worth adding any savings you have to your deposit to reduce the loan-to-value (LTV) ratio of the mortgage you need - especially if you are buying a more expensive property.

Negative equity and moving house

If the value of your home has fallen since you bought it, you may find that the amount you owe on your mortgage is greater than the amount you can earn by selling it. 

This is known as being in negative equity and makes it much harder to remortgage or move house.

Even if you want to move to a smaller, less valuable property, you’ll still need to find a way to pay off the amount you owe on your mortgage over and above the value of your current home.

As you won’t have any equity to cash in on your property, you’ll also need to raise a deposit - usually at least 10% of the purchase price - to get a new mortgage deal.

Moving house mortgage FAQs

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