Take the first step

Buying a home is likely to be the largest financial commitment you ever make so it is vital you find the right mortgage for you. When it is your first step on to the property ladder, the choices can be daunting.

With so many mortgage lenders offering  a huge range of products for first time buyers, Cooper Associates Mortgages can guide you through the complexity of today’s mortgage market.

We provide a bespoke mortgage recommendation that is suitable for your individual needs as well as being as competitive as it can be.

We offer a comprehensive range of mortgages from the whole of the market and have access to exclusive rates not always available on the high street. Our level of service, our size, and our access to market-leading products means we are perfectly placed to find the perfect mortgage for you as you take your first steps on to the property ladder.

What exactly is a mortgage?

A mortgage is simply a long-term loan taken out to buy a property or land. The term of the mortgage will have an impact on your monthly mortgage payments.

The loan is ‘secured’ against the value of your property until you have finished paying it off. If you do not make your mortgage payments, and the mortgage falls into arrears, the mortgage lender is within their rights to repossess the property and sell it to repay the money you borrowed. Remember, a mortgage is a legal agreement. Because of this, it is really important to ensure whatever you borrow is affordable both now and in the future.

Our mortgage advisers will discuss your borrowing options and their affordability before you start your property search.

How do I repay my mortgage?

The money you borrow from your mortgage lender is known as the capital.
Your mortgage lender will then charge you interest on the capital borrowed. The longer
your term, the more interest you will pay over the duration of your mortgage.


There are different options available to
repay your mortgage.

Interest only mortgage

An ‘interest only’ mortgage involves you only paying the interest on the capital you have borrowed. The capital is repaid usually by a suitable ‘repayment vehicle’ agreed with the mortgage lender, for example, with regular ISA savings made over the agreed term of the mortgage. Many lenders do not offer interest-only mortgages any more due to concerns over borrowers not being able to repay their mortgage at the end of its term.

Repayment mortgage

A ‘repayment mortgage’, also known as a capital and interest mortgage, repays some of the capital you owe with each mortgage payment as well as some of the interest being charged on the capital you owe your mortgage lender. Providing you do not miss a mortgage payment, the mortgage is guaranteed to be repaid by the end of its term.

In both instances, the mortgage lender has security of the property. Our recommendation for first-time buyers is usually a repayment mortgage.

What size deposit do I need?

When buying a property, you will need to pay a deposit or a sum of money towards the value of the property you are buying.

Generally, you will need a minimum of 5% of the purchase price of the property you intend to buy. The remainder of the purchase price – the gap between your deposit and the price you are buying the property for – is met by a mortgage.

The larger the deposit you are able to provide, the less of a risk you present to a mortgage lender. Due to this you are likely to be offered a more attractive mortgage deal and the less you are likely to have to pay back in the way of interest.

Speak to an expert

What type of interest rates are there?

Lenders offer different ways in which they charge interest. Your mortgage adviser will discuss the
various options with you to establish the most appropriate for your circumstances.

There are many different products but generally they will fall into three categories.

  • Fixed rate mortgage
    Fixed rate mortgage

    A fixed rate is a rate of interest you pay for a set period of time. This may be two, three or five years although it can be longer. Your mortgage payment will not change during the time you are fixed in for, which allows you to budget effectively. If interest rates rise, you will be protected against any increases and your mortgage payments will remain the same.

    However, if they should fall, you will not benefit from a reduction in interest or your mortgage payment.

  • Tracker rate mortgage
    Tracker rate mortgage

    A tracker rate will normally follow the movements of the Bank of England base rate at a particular percentage above or below it. You can track for a particular period of time, or track indefinitely, known as a ‘lifetime’ tracker. If the base rate increases, so will the rate applied to your mortgage along with your mortgage payments. If the base rate falls, so will your rate of interest and monthly payments.

  • Standard variable rate mortgage
    Standard variable rate mortgage

    Each lender has a standard variable rate which generally follows, although is usually higher than, the Bank of England base rate. It is usually the rate your mortgage will revert back to once your fixed/tracker rate finishes. Standard variable rates can be high and vary between lenders so it is always important to ensure you diarise when your introductory rate finishes. At Cooper Associates, your mortgage adviser will diarise to contact you.

Fixed rate mortgage
Tracker rate mortgage
Standard variable rate mortgage
Fixed rate mortgage

A fixed rate is a rate of interest you pay for a set period of time. This may be two, three or five years although it can be longer. Your mortgage payment will not change during the time you are fixed in for, which allows you to budget effectively. If interest rates rise, you will be protected against any increases and your mortgage payments will remain the same.

However, if they should fall, you will not benefit from a reduction in interest or your mortgage payment.

Tracker rate mortgage

A tracker rate will normally follow the movements of the Bank of England base rate at a particular percentage above or below it. You can track for a particular period of time, or track indefinitely, known as a ‘lifetime’ tracker. If the base rate increases, so will the rate applied to your mortgage along with your mortgage payments. If the base rate falls, so will your rate of interest and monthly payments.

Standard variable rate mortgage

Each lender has a standard variable rate which generally follows, although is usually higher than, the Bank of England base rate. It is usually the rate your mortgage will revert back to once your fixed/tracker rate finishes. Standard variable rates can be high and vary between lenders so it is always important to ensure you diarise when your introductory rate finishes. At Cooper Associates, your mortgage adviser will diarise to contact you.

Documents a lender may want to see

  • Photo ID
  • Proof of address
  • Last three month’s payslips and most recent P60
  • Last two years SA302S / Accounts
  • Three month’s personal bank statements
  • Gifted deposit letter and proof of individual gifting

Cooper Associates Wealth Management’s advice is always excellent, their service second to none and their knowledge exceptional. I have total trust in them looking after my personal finances.

Jos Buttler – England Cricketer and Cooper Associates Group brand ambassador

Our Locations

Taunton (Head Office)

T. 01823 273 880

40 St. James Buildings,
St. James Street,
Taunton, Somerset TA1 1JR

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T. 01454 629 610

130 Aztec, Park Avenue,
Aztec West,
Bristol BS32 4UB

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T. 01242 569 853

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Jessop Avenue,
Cheltenham GL50 3SH

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T. 01392 345 544

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Southernhay Gardens,
Exeter EX1 1UG

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T. 0208 042 0310

30 Lombard St,
London,
EC3V 9BQ

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T. 01752 746 848

4th Floor, Salt Quay House,
6 North East Quay,
Sutton Harbour,
Plymouth PL4 0HP

Reading

T. 0118 207 9319

1210 Arlington Business Park,
Theale,
Reading RG7 4TY