How does porting a mortgage work?

illustration of How does porting a mortgage work?

If you’ve got a mortgage and want to move home, you might be confused about what your options are. Normally, you’ll have two options: take out a new mortgage, or move your existing one across to your new home. 

However, sometimes you might be restricted by your circumstances and current mortgage. In this Guide, you’ll find out how porting a mortgage works, and the different factors that affect your options. 

What is porting a mortgage?

Basically, porting a mortgage means moving it from one property to another. Think ‘port’ as in ‘portable’. 

Most mortgages are portable, but you’ll have to check with your individual lender whether your particular deal can be moved. However, it’s not always guaranteed that you’ll be able to port your mortgage.

How does porting a mortgage work?

You’ll need to reapply

To port your mortgage, you effectively have to reapply to your lender for that same deal. It’s the same process as if you were applying for the first time. Depending on when you took out your mortgage, your lender’s criteria may be stricter, so you’ll have to put together a well-crafted application. Your mortgage broker can help you do this. If you’ve missed any of your mortgage payments then this could work against you.

Check if you need to borrow more

If you’re upsizing or moving to a nicer home, chances are you’ll need to borrow more on your mortgage to cover the cost. Depending on how near you are to the limit of how much your lender will let you borrow, this could make things tricky. 

Understand your interest rate

When you port your mortgage, you’re still tied to the lender who gave you the mortgage. Your interest rate could also change when you move the mortgage. These interest rates can be good deals - or not - depending on what your lender’s currently offering. 

Before buying a new home, it’s best to get expert advice from a mortgage broker who can work through your options. We can help with that! Make an enquiry to get matched to an advisor.

What do I need to think about when porting my mortgage?

Whether you move your mortgage or take out a new one, the process will involve reapplying for a mortgage. This means you’ll have to pass the various checks that were carried out the first time around, such as credit checks and affordability tests

Before your application, it’s a good idea to check your credit file and make sure everything on there is up to date. You can do this using checkmyfile* - it’s free for 30 days and gathers information from all the big credit agencies in the UK, giving you a fuller picture of where you stand. 

Unfortunately, already having a mortgage doesn’t guarantee you’ll get accepted again. But getting an idea of what you’ll need to provide will put you in a good position. Each lender is different, but generally you’ll be asked to submit:

  • At least three months of bank statements

  • At least three months of payslips (or accounts if you’re self-employed)

  • A credit report

  • Proof of ID such as passport or driving license

  • Recent utility bills (your name will need to be on them)

Read more in our Guide: What Do Mortgage Lenders Look For in Mortgage Applicants?

Some mortgage lenders can be picky about what type of properties they’re willing to give you a loan for. If you’re buying something a little different from the norm - perhaps above a shop or a high rise building - there might be different rules. 

It’s a good idea to work with a mortgage broker who can go through your options and find the right deal for you. They’ll make the process as straightforward and stress-free as possible, you just need to find the right broker for your situation. That’s where we come in! Make an enquiry to speak to one of our Mortgage Experts.

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What happens if I can’t port my mortgage?

If you can’t move your mortgage to a new property, you have a couple of options:

Take out another mortgage with a different lender

You’re free to end your mortgage early, but you could end up paying big fees to do so. If you’re on a fixed deal that hasn’t come to an end, you’ll have to pay what’s called an Early Repayment Charge. These fees can be around 1-5% of the amount you still have left to pay. So you’ll need to weigh up whether the new mortgage will be worth it. If you’re not in a fixed deal, you’ll probably still have to pay an ‘exit fee’ which could be a few hundred pounds.

Stay put

Probably not the situation you want. But if you can't afford huge fees then you might be better off staying where you are for the moment until your mortgage deal ends or your situation improves. 

It’s worth talking to a specialist mortgage broker if you’re struggling to port your mortgage. Our Mortgage Experts know the market and will have experience dealing with people in your situation. Make an enquiry to find out your options.

What happens if I can’t port my mortgage and am struggling to get a new mortgage deal?

There’s around 250,000 homeowners in the UK who are stuck in their current mortgage deal, known as ‘mortgage prisoners’. So you’re not alone. 

It’s a good idea to speak with a specialist mortgage broker who can look through your options and see if there’s a better deal that you could be eligible for.

Make an enquiry to get started with one of our Mortgage Experts. It only takes two minutes and won’t harm your credit score.


Our Mortgage Experts are fully-qualified with experience in bad credit, self-employed and complex mortgages. They have a proven track record of getting mortgages for people who’ve been rejected elsewhere.

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