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How to buy a house in the UK

  • October 31, 2018

If you are planning on relocating to the UK permanently, you may consider buying a property over renting one. Buying a house in the UK is a complex and often a very lengthy process, so in this post, we provide you with a summary of the steps you will have to take when buying a house.

Step 1: Save for a deposit

Typically, you will need to save for a deposit of at least 5-15% of the price of the property you want to buy. However, it is often worth saving more if possible because a bigger deposit means a better mortgage deal.

When saving try and save into the following types of bank accounts: Help to Buy ISA’s or Lifetime ISA’s – these accounts will give you a 25% top-up from the UK government.

For further information on each account click here.

Other options:

  • Shared ownership – you buy a 25%-75% share in a property and pay rent on the rest of it.
  • Help from family – some mortgage lenders will take parents’ incomes or assets into account, making it easier for you to borrow money.

Step 2: Enquire about how much mortgage you are entitled to borrow

The amount a mortgage provider will lend you to buy a house will depend on the size of your deposit, your income and your credit score. If you are buying a property with a partner, the lender will also take their finances into account.

Tip – budget for additional costs such as property surveys, conveyancing fees, stamp duty etc.

What if I have little credit history within the UK?

We are proud to partner with Lloyd Wells Mortgages, an independent property finance broker and specialise in securing finance for professionals such as doctors and surgeons.

In addition, they can secure finance for clients without permanent rights to reside and that have little credit history in the UK.

As a benefit to using BDI Resourcing we have negotiated direct access to the team at Lloyd Wells that specialise in mortgages for doctors.

Lloyd Wells can help clients with:

  • 10% deposit or more
  • Little or no UK credit history
  • Tier 1 and 2 Visa

To find out more information, visit their website here: 

To discuss your mortgage requirements in more detail please contact Pete Lloyd on 07879 007 610 or email p[email protected]

Step 3: Apply for a mortgage agreement in principle

This is a confirmation from a mortgage lender that they would, in principle, be willing to lend you a certain amount should you find a property. Having an agreement can make you a more attractive buyer as it shows the seller that you will be able to secure the amount of money you need to buy the property.

Step 4: Find a property

Once you have found the perfect property it will be time to make an offer. It is common practice to offer less than the asking price, however, if other people are making offers for the property, you may need to offer the asking price or more.

When making an offer mention any points that will enhance your profile e.g. you are a chain-free first-time buyer.

Step 5: Apply for a mortgage

You will now need to start thinking about the type of mortgage you want to apply for and how long you want to spend paying your mortgage off.

Click here to visit a mortgage calculation site.

Step 6: Find a conveyancer or a solicitor

Conveyancing is the legal process after your offer is accepted. This includes conducting property searches, checking documents, drawing up and checking contracts, dealing with the land registry, paying any stamp duty and transferring money.

Conveyancing fees can range from around £500 to £1,500 – this will vary depending on the cost of the property and the complexity of the transaction.

Step 7: Exchange Contracts

You can exchange contracts with your seller when the legal representatives swap signed contracts and you have paid the deposit.

Completion of the transaction typically takes place two weeks after the exchange, however, the date is flexible, and you can agree a convenient time with the seller.

On completion day, the money will be transferred to the seller and you can then collect the keys from the estate agent and move into your new home.

Congratulations! And enjoy your new home!

If you have any questions about the above information or relocation to the UK in general, get in touch with us at [email protected] and we will be happy to help.

Join our Facebook Group IMG Advisor – here, you will have access to frequent relocation blog posts, the opportunity to ask questions and receive professional support and the chance to meet other IMGs.


Cheung, C. (2018). How to buy a house. [online] Which? Money. Available at: [Accessed 31 Oct. 2018].


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