Frequently asked questions
If this is your first time buying a house, you're bound to have the odd question. So to help you along the way, we've answered some of the most common questions we hear from first time buyers.
Our decision on how much we are willing to lend is based upon a full affordability assessment where we will look to understand your income, any loan or credit card commitments and regular essential household expenditure. In addition, we'll also perform a credit check to make sure your credit rating is suitable for mortgage purposes.
To get a more accurate idea of how much you can borrow, get a decision in principle before you apply for a mortgage in full. Arrange an appointment with one of our qualified mortgage advisers by calling 0345 111 8010 **.
The bigger your deposit, the lower your loan to value and therefore the lower your mortgage interest rate may be.
With our mortgages, you'll need at least 5% of your loan as a deposit, as we offer a maximum of 95% loan to value.
See below for details of how much we may be able to lend:
First time buyer and home mover
|Amount of lending||What we may be able to lend|
|£40,000 - £300,000||Up to 95% Loan to Value|
|£300,001 - £500,000||Up to 90% Loan to Value|
|£500,001 - £750,000||Up to 80% Loan to Value|
|£750,001 - £1,000,000||Up to 75% Loan to Value|
For new build houses, the maximum LTV is 85%.
For new build flats, the maximum LTV is 75%.
What you pay every month depends on a number of factors - the amount you borrow, the term of your loan and your mortgage interest rate. You can find out what your monthly payment is on your mortgage illustration.
You can also give our mortgage calculator a go. It'll give you a good idea of what you'll pay before you apply for a mortgage.
Yes. Our mortgage products allow you to make overpayments either as a lump sum or as regular overpayments.
Depending when you want to make an overpayment, and how much you want to pay, you might have to pay an early repayment charge.
For example, when you first start your mortgage or when you switch to a new product, there may be an early repayment charge period. So, during that period, you can overpay, without charge, by up to 10% of your balance within a 12 month anniversary period. But if you overpay more than 10%, you'll pay a charge on the payment amount that's over this.
When you're outside an early repayment charge period, you can overpay by as much as you like without paying any charge.
Full details of your overpayment facility can be found in your mortgage offer and Terms and Conditions (PDF, 1.3MB).
If you want to make a lump sum overpayment to your mortgage you can call the team on 0345 111 8020 ** – they can also set up a regular overpayment for you.
How long it takes depends on various things - your circumstances, your house hunt, whether you have all the paperwork you need. The list goes on.
Once we have everything we need from you, including all the relevant information, your valuation and documents, we'll send your offer within 3-5 working days.
For more information about what's involved in buying your new home - from start to finish - have a look at our steps to buying your home.
When you apply for a mortgage with us, we'll arrange for a valuation (sometimes called a valuation survey but it's more of a report) on the property you want to buy. That's so we know it's worth what you're paying for it, and that we're lending you the right amount.
The valuation will usually mention any obvious defects. But other than that it won't tell you anything about the condition of the property. It's just there to put a value on the property for us.
You'll have to pay for the valuation. How much depends on the size and value of the property. It could be between £150 and £1,500 - you'll see the cost in your mortgage illustration.
Some of our mortgages come with free valuations, so we save you a little bit extra.
A Standard Valuation is the only type of survey that Sainsbury's Bank will instruct. There are other types of survey available. If you’re unsure which type of survey you’d like, speak to your Mortgage Adviser who will be able to provide you with the contact details to speak to the valuation team who act on our behalf. The two main additional surveys are:
This is a more detailed report which provides an overview of the structure and condition of the property, including all the accessible parts. It mentions all major defects, and includes a roof inspection where possible. But it doesn't go into detail or give information about what repairs you need to do to put things right.
Building survey (or full structural survey)
This is generally the most detailed and therefore most expensive survey you can have done.
Like the homebuyer's report, it covers all aspects of the property. But it gives more comprehensive information on the structure and condition - for example if there's damp or subsidence. It will also include details of what repairs you'll need to do to put any defects right, and how to maintain them. However it does not include a valuation of the property.
If your purchase falls through after your mortgage application has been approved and an offer of mortgage has been made, we may be able to give you a new mortgage offer when you find a new home. You'll have to pay for a new valuation. But if you need to borrow the same amount or less, we'll have all the information we need and we'll have done our checks already. So we can get a new offer to you, as long as the new property meets our lending criteria.
If the purchase of your new home is delayed, just let us know. Please call us to give us your new, expected completion date. Then we'll review your mortgage offer and extend the date if we need to.
No, we'll need details of the property you want to buy - and we'll need to value it - before we can consider giving you a mortgage.
But we do recommend getting a decision in principle if you haven't found your house yet. Although not a guarantee, it will give you an idea how much we might be able to lend. So you have a figure in mind when you start house hunting.
You will need:
- three months of payslips - they must be your most recent ones and the most recent must be dated within the last 35 days
- your latest P60 from your employer
- your last three months of bank statements for your current account
- statements or other proof for any benefits you get (no more than three months old)
- proof of your name and address - like your passport, bank statements or utility bills.
If you're self-employed, as well as the relevant things from the list above, you'll need to show us your business bank statements for the last 3 months, and one of these:
- Your accountant's certificates signed by a suitably qualified accountant
- SA302s and tax year overviews for the last 3 years
- The financial statements for your business for the last 3 years – the most recent year's statement should be signed by a suitably qualified accountant (within the last 18 months).
Conveyancing is the legal term for transferring the ownership of a property, whether you're buying or selling.
A solicitor or conveyancer will handle the contracts, give you legal advice, do local council searches, deal with the Land Registry/Registers of Scotland and transfer your money to the seller. The conveyancer you use needs to be on our panel.
When you buy a residential property over a specified amount in England, Northern Ireland or Wales, you have to pay Stamp Duty. There's a different rate for non-residential properties.
The tax applies to both freehold and leasehold properties - whether you're buying outright or with a mortgage.
In Scotland it is Land and Buildings Transaction Tax you have to pay. Again, this only applies to properties over a specified amount.
What you pay in tax depends on the price you pay for the property.
Stamp Duty is tiered - like income tax - so you pay different rates of tax on different portions of the property price. Have a look at the Stamp Duty Land Tax on the government website for more details.
Land and Buildings Transaction Tax works in a similar way - have a look on Revenue Scotland for more details.
With one of our mortgages, you can apply to borrow more money after you've made a minimum of six monthly payments.
The minimum amount you can borrow is £5,000, and you may need to pay a fee. The additional money you borrow will increase the amount you owe, the interest you need to pay and your monthly payments.
Here's how it works:
- Arrange to speak to one of our qualified mortgage advisors by calling 0345 111 8020 **
- They'll carry out a full affordability check using your income and expenditure, to ensure you can afford the bigger monthly payments for the extra money you want to borrow
- They'll also check the extra money won't take your total mortgage over our maximum loan-to-value ratio.
- They'll then be able to recommend the right product for your circumstances.
collapsed My property is a new build, which building warranties are acceptable to Sainsbury's Bank in this instance?
An acceptable New Build/Self Build warranty must be in place for any property which has been built or converted in the last 10 years, or is to be occupied for the first time. Acceptable warranty schemes include:
- NHBC Buildmark
- NHBC Solo (discontinued for New Builds from 2016)
- Zurich Municipal
- Castle 10 New Home Warranty – provided by Checkmate
- LABC New Home Warranty
- Premier Guarantee for New HomesBuilding Life Plan Ltd
- CRL Management Ltd
- Certification by certain professional consultants may be accepted subject to it being in standard Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) format, where the property has been built/converted within the last 6 years.
Professional Consultant's Certificates may also be accepted, where they are signed by:
- A qualified Architect, who is a corporate member of the Royal Institute of British Architects, or
- A qualified Chartered Building Surveyor, who is a corporate member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors
Evidence of appropriate valid personal indemnity insurance will be required and the certificate must be for the benefit of the borrower(s). The Architect/Building Surveyor must confirm that he has supervised the whole project.