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How Long Does a Mortgage Application Take to Approve?

Are you eagerly searching for your dream home but feeling overwhelmed by the mortgage application process? We understand the excitement and anxiety that comes with finding the perfect place to call your own. But fear not, as we delve into the mystery of how long a mortgage application takes to approve.

From gathering documents to waiting on pins and needles, join us on this informative journey, where we shed light on every step involved in getting approved for that coveted loan. So grab a cup of coffee, sit back, and let’s unravel this intriguing question together!

Overview of the Mortgage Application Process

Overview of the Mortgage Application Process

The mortgage application process can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks, depending on the lender and your financial situation. Here’s a summary of what to expect:

  1. Collecting your paperwork. The first step is gathering all required documentation, including your tax returns, pay stubs, and bank statements.
  2. Applying for a loan. Once you have all your paperwork in order, you must fill out a loan application and submit it to the lender.
  3. Going through underwriting. The next step is for the lender to review your application and supporting documentation and decide whether to approve your loan. This process can take 10 days to seven weeks or more.
  4. Getting approved. If everything goes well, you will be approved for the loan and can move forward with buying your home! If not, the lender may require additional information or documents from you before they make a final decision.

Factors That Affect Timeline for Approval

When you apply for a mortgage, the lender will give you a timeline for approval. This timeline can be affected by numerous factors, including:

  • The type of mortgage you’re applying for. Some mortgages, like FHA loans, have longer timelines for approval than others.
  • Your credit score. If your credit score is low, getting approved for a mortgage could take longer.
  • The amount of money you’re borrowing. The more money you’re borrowing, the longer it could take to get approved.
  • The current market conditions. If interest rates are rising or there’s high demand for mortgages, it could take longer to get approved.

How Long Does a Mortgage Application Take to Approve?

How Long Does a Mortgage Application Take to Approve?

In the United Kingdom, the average duration for the approval of a mortgage application spans from 2 to 6 weeks. This timeline commences once your comprehensive application has been submitted and may fluctuate based on various factors, including:

Factors impacting approval time:

  1. Mortgage Complexity: Applications with straightforward elements, such as those from first-time buyers with standard employment and excellent credit, tend to receive faster approval.
  2. Lender Workload: Periods of high demand for the lender’s services may result in extended processing times.
  3. Property Type: Properties with non-standard characteristics, like flats above shops or newly constructed homes, may necessitate additional checks and surveys, thereby delaying the approval process.
  4. Completeness of Documentation: Timely submission of all required documents can expedite the overall process.

A breakdown of the typical timeline is as follows:

  • Initial Application: Up to 2 weeks for the lender to assess your eligibility and furnish an Agreement in Principle (AIP).
  • Formal Application: A processing period of 2-6 weeks, which includes activities such as property valuation, credit checks, and legal assessments.
  • Mortgage Offer: Upon approval, you will receive a formal mortgage offer detailing the terms and conditions.

Appraisal and Underwriting Process

The appraisal and underwriting process can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. The timeframe depends on the lender, the type of loan, and the borrower’s situation.

The first step in the process is to get an appraisal of the property. The appraiser will visit the property and assess its value. This can take a few days.

Once the appraisal is complete, the lender will order a title search. This is to make sure there are no outstanding liens or other claims on the property. This can take a few days to a week.

After the title search is complete, the lender will review all of the information they have on the borrower. This includes their credit history, employment history, and income. Based on this information, the lender will decide if they are approved for a loan.

Once approved, the borrower will need to sign some paperwork and provide any additional documentation that the lender requires. The loan will be funded once everything is in order and closing can occur.

Tips for Speeding Up the Mortgage Application Process

Tips for Speeding Up the Mortgage Application Process

If you’re looking to speed up the mortgage application process, you can do a few things. Those are,

Preparation is Key:

  1. Commence Early: Obtain mortgage pre-approval before house hunting to understand your affordability and enhance your offer’s strength
  2. Document Compilation: Gather essential documents such as pay stubs, tax returns, bank and investment statements, driver’s licenses, passports, National Insurance Number, purchase agreements, and property valuation reports
  3. Credit Check: Aim for a credit score above 740 for favourable rates and higher approval chances
  4. Mortgage Broker Selection: Opt for a mortgage broker to compare rates from multiple lenders and guide you through the process

Streamline the Application:

  1. Thorough Application Submission: Double-check all details and promptly provide any missing documents
  2. Clear and Regular Communication: Keep your lender informed about changes and respond promptly to inquiries
  3. Proactive Approach: Anticipate potential questions, and provide supporting documents to prevent delays
  4. Consider Hand-Delivering: Expedite the initial review by hand-delivering your application

Minimize Complications:

  1. Limit Significant Purchases or Credit Applications: Avoid actions that may negatively impact your credit score
  2. Ensure Consistent Employment: Changes in job status could raise concerns
  3. Explain Financial Discrepancies: Address any unusual transactions or debts upfront
  4. Opt for Standard Property Types: Non-standard properties may require additional checks and surveys.


When applying for a mortgage, it is important to consider the amount of time it may take to receive approval. The process can vary depending on the lender and type of loan you are looking for, but it typically takes around a month from start to finish.

It is also important to remember that if your application contains any errors or omissions, this could delay the process even further. Ultimately though, when done correctly and with all necessary information provided upfront, most mortgages will get approved within an acceptable timeframe.


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