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30 Sep 2019

Best mortgage lenders of 2019 revealed by Which?

Our new mortgage reviews show the lenders that combine excellent customer service with the best mortgage deals on the market

Nationwide has been rated the UK's best mortgage provider in a 2019 Which? survey, with an impressive 93% of its customers saying they were satisfied with their mortgage.

From first time buyers to remortgaging homeowners, we asked thousands of mortgage holders across the UK to rate their lender on its application process, online access, complaints handling and more.

Which? experts then analysed the deals on offer from each lender to reveal the providers leading on value for money as well as service.

Here, we reveal the best and worst mortgage lenders of 2019 and explain how to choose the right provider for your circumstances.

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The UK's five best mortgage lenders

Which? surveyed more than 3,500 members of the public in June 2019 to find out their thoughts on their current mortgage deal and lender.

Our experts then calculated a customer score for each lender, by combining borrowers' satisfaction with their lender with how likely they said they would be to recommend the bank or building society to a friend.

Each year, lenders that achieve high customer scores and also offer great mortgage deals are eligible for the title of 'Which? Recommended Mortgage Provider'. This year, three lenders - all building societies - made the cut: Nationwide, Principality and Coventry Building Society.

Here are the best lenders according to our survey:

RankLenderWhich? customer score
1Nationwide (Which? Recommended Provider)79%
2=Principality Building Society (Which? Recommended Provider)76%
2=Coventry Building Society (Which? Recommended Provider)76%
3Skipton Building Society74%
4Metro Bank73%
5First Direct72%
  • Find out more: see how your mortgage provider fared, and find out more about how we conduct our research, in our full guide to the best and worst mortgage lenders

What customers say about the best mortgage lenders

Nationwide was one of only two lenders in our survey to receive five stars for its customer service.

Three in 10 Nationwide customers said its reputation was the reason why they took out a mortgage with the building society, and eight in 10 said they hadn't experienced any problems.

One customer described Nationwide's customer service as 'polite, friendly and professional', while another praised its online remortgaging service.

Ranking in joint-second, Principality Building Society was the only other lender in our survey to receive five stars for customer service. The provider also received five-star ratings for its clear mortgage statements and the way it handles complaints and queries.

Coventry Building Society also came second in our customer satisfaction survey. Nine in 10 customers found the lender was good at keeping them informed about their mortgage, with one Coventry customer describing how the lender seemed 'keen to make sure [they understood] everything' about their mortgage.

The UK's worst mortgage lenders

Kensington and Aldermore were among the lowest-ranked mortgage lenders in our customer satisfaction survey this year.

Kensington was the only provider in our survey to score just one star for its customer service. It also received the lowest rating of any lender for value for money, scoring just two stars.

When we checked in September 2019 the average rate of a two-year fixed deal from Kensington was 3.74%, compared to the industry average of 2.77%. The average rate of a two-year fixed mortgage from Aldermore was also relatively high, at 4.39%.

However, Aldermore and Kensington both specialise in lending to people with unusual circumstances or low credit scores, and these types of mortgages often charge higher rates due to the increased risk taken on by the lender.

How to find the best mortgage lender for you

Mortgage providers differ on who they will lend to, how much they'll lend and the types of properties they'll lend on.

The best mortgage provider for you will depend on a wide range of factors, including your credit history, employment status and the size of your deposit.

While our mortgage lender reviews give a helpful indication of a provider's overall performance, they might not provider the right answer for your situation.

A decent independent mortgage broker can review the mortgages available to you based on your personal finances, and save you time by telling you which lenders are likely to accept your application.