The most trusted mortgage provider for customer service
MOST TRUSTED: FIRST DIRECT
Whether you're a first-time buyer or already on the property ladder, arranging a mortgage has got ten times tougher over the last few years. Against this backdrop, providers have had to fight harder to win our trust.
But this doesn't appear to have affected First Direct, which picked up this award again this year with a clear lead over its rivals. It has a no-nonsense approach to mortgages, clearly explaining what it offers without hiding any details. Customers described its products as good value for money and offering competitive rates.
The application process also inspired confidence among customers, with many describing it as straightforward and hassle-free. One customer said: "I have recently been trying to arrange a mortgage and this was by far the least patronising and most helpful conversation. The level of service gives me confidence to be with it for other products too."
BEST MORTGAGE PROVIDER FOR APPLICATION PROCESS: FIRST DIRECT
Although the housing market is relatively flat, buying a house can be one of the most stressful times of your life. Knowing your mortgage is all sorted can help to take some of the pressure off.
First Direct has won the title of best provider for the mortgage application process this year. It sets out to make the mortgage process as easy as possible and certainly this is something recognised by its customers who like its rates, the range of mortgages and the provider's good communication.
And, perhaps demonstrating how much it wants to help its customers, one said: "I negotiated my latest mortgage with it in the month the financial crisis started. No one else wanted to know."
BEST MORTGAGE PROVIDER FOR CONSISTENCY OF RATES: FIRST DIRECT
Although the Bank of England base rate is low, there's a lot of difference between the best and worst mortgage rates. Finding a provider that can offer value for money year in year out is therefore important and First Direct's mortgage holders have put it in top spot as a result.
Many praised the rates, saying they were attractive and among the best for the type of mortgage they'd taken out. Customers also said they liked the transparency of the products, with no early redemption penalties on some deals. "They don't have any hidden charges," said one customer. Another customer summed it up by saying: "It was top mortgage choice for many months when I was looking. It was easy to access and to deal with First Direct."
Also referred to as the bank rate or the minimum lending rate, the Bank of England base rate is the lowest rate the Bank uses to discount bills of exchange. This affects consumers as it is used by mainstream lenders and banks as the basis for calculating interest rates on mortgages, loans and savings.