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First Direct mortgage review

Our First Direct mortgage review combines customer feedback with expert deal analysis to reveal whether the lender is worth considering next time you apply for a mortgage.

In this article
First Direct mortgages customer ratings What kinds of mortgages does First Direct offer? Does First Direct offer the best mortgage deals? Interest rates on First Direct mortgages How much can I borrow from First Direct?
Can I make overpayments? How can I contact First Direct? First Direct mortgage eligibility What First Direct mortgage customers say Get personal mortgage advice

First Direct mortgages customer ratings

Mortgages
First Direct Review
Which? Customer Score
77%
Joint 2nd out of 23 mortgage lenders
Which?'s rating for customer satisfaction, based on feedback from real customers. The score is made up of a customer's overall satisfaction with the brand, and how likely they are to recommend that brand.
Compare First Direct against 22 other lenders

The table below shows how Which? Recommended Provider First Direct mortgages performed in our latest mortgage satisfaction survey, from application process to value for money.

Customer rating for: Star rating
Customer service

5 out of 5

Application process

0 out of 5

Value for money

4 out of 5

Keeping you well informed

4 out of 5

Clarity of statements

4 out of 5

Transparency of charges

4 out of 5

Query and complaint handling

4 out of 5

Ability to overpay or underpay mortgage

5 out of 5

Online access

4 out of 5

 

Star ratings based on a June 2018 Which? survey of 3,560 members of the general public, in which 76 people told us they had their mortgage with First Direct. Where no rating is given the sample size was too small.


What kinds of mortgages does First Direct offer?

When we checked in July 2018, there were around 30 different mortgages available from First Direct – a fairly small number.

Most were fixed-rate deals lasting two or five years, with a few 10-year fixed rates available. The rest were lifetime tracker mortgages.

Does First Direct offer interest-only mortgages?

Yes, although your salary needs to be at least £50,000 in order to apply.

Alternatively, if you’re applying with another person, your total salary would need to be at least £75,000, unless one of you earns at least £50,000.

Interest-only mortgages from First Direct are offset mortgages. This means that any money held in an eligible First Direct savings or current account will be deducted from the mortgage balance you pay interest on.

You can have an interest-only mortgage from First Direct for up to 25 years. You can repay capital during the mortgage, and you may also be able to borrow back capital that you’ve repaid.

Looking for a mortgage?

Which? Mortgage Advisers can find the best lenders and deals for your personal situation.

Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up your mortgage repayments.

Does First Direct offer the best mortgage deals?

Which? analysis has found that First Direct offers more cheap mortgages than the average lender.

In order to work this out, our experts analysed thousands of mortgages over a four-week period in June and July 2018. They compiled a total of 108 ‘top-10 cheapest deal’ tables based on a variety of borrowing scenarios, and counted how many times each lender featured in a table.

The average number of times a lender made it into a table was 14, while First Direct featured 78 times. (Data source: Moneyfacts.)

Interest rates on First Direct mortgages

First Direct offers three types of interest rates – fixed, tracker and standard variable.

When we checked in July 2018, most mortgages from First Direct were fixed-rate deals, meaning your interest rate is guaranteed to stay the same for a set number of years. Fixed-rate deals were mostly available for two or five years, with a small number of 10-year deals also available.

The average rate of two-year fixed-rate mortgage from First Direct was 1.85%, compared to the industry average of 2.81%.

How much can I borrow from First Direct?

Below we’ve outlined how much you could borrow on a repayment mortgage from First Direct, in relation to the percentage of the property’s value.

Loan size Loan-to-value
Up to and including £400,000 90%
More than £400,000 up to £1 million 80%
More than £1 million up to £2 million 75%
More than £2 million 65%

We’ve also outlined how much you could borrow on an interest-only mortgage from First Direct, in relation to the percentage of the property’s value.

Loan size Loan-to-value
Up to and including £400,000 75%
More than £400,000 up to £1 million 75%
More than £1 million up to £2 million 65%
More than £2 million 50%

If you’re buying a new-build property, the most you could borrow from First Direct is 85% of the property’s value. But if you want to borrow more than 75% for a new-build, you’ll need to have a deposit of at least £25,000.

Can I make overpayments?

If you have a tracker or standard variable rate mortgage, you can make unlimited overpayments without having to pay an early repayment charge.

With a fixed-rate mortgage from First Direct you can also make unlimited overpayments. But if you’re paying a fixed interest rate and want to repay the entire mortgage, you may have to pay an early repayment charge.

How can I contact First Direct?

New customers can contact 03456 100103, and existing customers can call 03456 100236.

Its website is firstdirect.com.

First Direct mortgage eligibility

First Direct doesn’t require a minimum salary if you’re applying for a repayment mortgage.

The bank currently doesn’t lend on buy-to-let properties, or if you bought your property under a Right to Buy or shared ownership scheme.

If your property is a leasehold, you’ll only be able to get a mortgage from First Direct if there’s at least 25 years left on the lease when the mortgage ends.

What First Direct mortgage customers say

Get personal mortgage advice

Correct as of date of publication.

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