If you need a mortgage to buy a property, keeping repayments affordable is probably at the top of your list.

The good news is that mortgage rates - the rate of interest applied to the amount of money you borrow - are hovering around all-time lows.

Ensuring you secure the lowest mortgage rate possible is where it can get tricky, especially as there are so many loans to choose from. Your default action might be to go to your own High Street bank thinking they'll look upon your application favourably but the variety of loans/rates they can offer will be limited - and there may be a better deal out there but with another lender.

Using an independent mortgage advisor - sometimes referred to as an IFA - is the best way of securing the lowest mortgage rate and the most favourable loan for your circumstances. An independent advisor has access to the 'whole market' - this means they can see all the different products offered by multiple banks and building societies.

You'll often find an independent mortgage advisor in an estate agent's branch - like we have at London Residential. This doesn't mean the advisor has any ties or affiliations with the agent (they are totally independent) but it does mean you can come into branch to arrange your mortgage and talk about your property situation at the same time.

Our blog on the merits of an in-branch independent mortgage advisor is a must-read for anyone needing a mortgage for a home purchase.