Porting your mortgage means taking the same mortgage deal with you to a different property – keeping the same lender, interest rate, loan amount and rules. The switch can happen on the same day, or within a few months.
It helps you avoid early exit fees, though technically, you pay your lender the fees before you port, then get a refund once your new mortgage kicks in.
Some people port their mortgage to avoid the hassle of applying with a new lender. But don’t assume that just because it’s the same lender, your port is a done deal. You’ll need a new offer letter, so there’s still a process to go through. Your lender will give you another credit check, look at your income, and get a valuation of the property you want to buy.
If your credit rating has changed since your original offer (eg you’ve missed a couple of mortgage payments) it might reduce the chance of getting your port signed off.
Should you remortgage instead?
Instead of porting, some people might find remortgaging with a new lender makes more financial sense.
If you remortgage while you’re still in the introductory period you agreed with your lender, they may ask for an early exit fee. If those fees cost more what you’d save with a new lender, it might be better to stay put till your introductory period is over. A broker can help you decide what works best for you.
Can I increase my mortgage when I port?
You can ask your lender, but they don’t have to say yes. They might insist you take out an additional top-up mortgage instead, with a higher interest rate to cover the extra borrowing – as lenders see a two-mortgage borrower as more of a risk. Or they might ask you to get a second charge mortgage.
Can I decrease my mortgage when I port?
If you want to port your mortgage but borrow less than what you currently owe (because you’re downsizing, say) you’ll need to repay the difference to your lender. Most lenders let you reduce your mortgage by up to 10% for free, then after that they charge you a fee. Your broker can help you find the best approach.