First Time Buyers - Frequently Asked Questions


Got a question about mortgages? Take a look at our FAQ below or give us a call on 1890 500 121 for more info.

General First Time Buyer Mortgage FAQ

  1. What exactly is a mortgage?
  2. How do I start the application process?
  3. What’s a fixed rate mortgage?
  4. What’s a variable rate mortgage?
  5. How much will my repayments be every month?
  6. What’s the minimum amount I can borrow?
  7. What’s the maximum amount I can borrow?
  8. How long will my mortgage last for?
  9. What documents do I need?
  10. What’s a loan-to-value (LTV) ratio?
  11. What is the stamp duty payable on mortgages?
  12. What are lenders' normal lending criteria for a mortgage?
  13. How much of a deposit do I need?
  14. What else should I bear in mind when taking out a mortgage?

Discounted Managed Variable Rates (MVRs) FAQ

  1. What are Discounted Managed Variable Rates (MVRs)?
  2. What are the rates available?
  3. What are the MVR rates?
  4. What customers can qualify for a Discounted MVR?
  5. Are Discounted MVRs available to existing permanent tsb customers, including those in arrears?
  6. Are Discounted MVRs available to Buy-to-Let customers?
  7. What about new customers whose loan-to-value is greater than 80%?
  8. How will customers know if they are entitled to a Discounted MVR?
  9. What will happen if I want to change my approval to a Discounted MVR?
  10. After 12 months will my repayments be affected when my mortgage matures to an MVR?
  11. How will I find out if my repayment changes during the term of my mortgage?
  12. How long will my mortgage stay on the MVR?
  13. Will the Bank convert any existing MVR customers to Discounted MVRs?

General First Time Buyer Mortgage FAQ

1. What exactly is a mortgage?

A mortgage is simply a long-term loan that’s used to pay for a house.

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2. How do I start the application process?

There are a number of easy ways to begin your application:

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3. What’s a fixed rate mortgage?

With a fixed rate mortgage, your interest rate and monthly repayments are fixed for a set time as agreed between the lender and borrower.

Although a fixed rate means your repayments cannot increase for a set period of time, your repayments will not fall during the fixed rate period. As a result, you could miss out on lower interest rates and lower repayments. Fixed rates may cost more over the long run but they offer peace of mind as you know your repayments will not rise during the fixed rate period.

Take a look at our list of rate options

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4. What’s a variable rate mortgage?

Variable rates offer the most flexibility. They allow you to increase your repayments, use a lump sum to pay off all or part of your mortgage or re-mortgage without having to pay any fixed rate breakage fees.

However, because variable rates can rise and fall, your mortgage repayments can go up or down during the term of your loan.

Take a look at our list of rate options

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5. How much will my repayments be every month?

Your repayments will depend on how much you borrow, the term or length of your mortgage as well as the interest rate that you’re charged. See our handy online mortgage quick quote calculator for an indication of how much your monthly repayments might be.

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6. What’s the minimum amount I can borrow?

The minimum loan amount you can borrow for a mortgage is €40,000. The minimum loan amount for further advances is €25,000.

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7. What’s the maximum amount I can borrow?

The maximum amount you can borrow depends on several factors such as your income and your capacity to repay your loan. For a guideline on how much you could potentially borrow check out our online Mortgage Calculator.

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8. How long will my mortgage last for?

Every mortgage has a life span or term. Our minimum term is 5 years and you could also possibly qualify for the maximum term possible which is 35 years. Our Buy to Let mortgages have a maximum term of 25 years.

A shorter term means you’ll pay your mortgage off quicker but it also means your monthly repayments will be higher.

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9. What documents do I need?

There are various documents you’ll need to complete during the application process. Read the full list of documents required here.

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10. What’s a loan-to-value (LTV) ratio?

LTV, or loan-to-value, is all about how much mortgage you have in relation to how much your property is worth. It's normally a percentage figure that reflects the percentage of your property that is mortgaged, and the amount that is yours (the amount you own is usually called your equity).

For example, if you have a mortgage of €150,000 on a house that's worth €200,000 you have a loan-to-value of 75% - therefore you have €50,000 as equity.

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11. What is the stamp duty payable on mortgages?

Stamp duty is payable at 1% on properties up to the value of €1 million euro and 2% on properties over this amount.

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12. What are lenders' normal lending criteria for a mortgage?

Every lender will look at various criteria before deciding whether to approve a mortgage. Some of the main factors that are taken into account are:

  • A good credit history
  • Being aged 18 or over
  • Age not greater than 70 at the end of the mortgage term
  • Ability to repay - as a guide mortgage repayments on all loans including your mortgage should not exceed 35% of your net income
  • Secure employment
  • Continuous employment for two years
  • Good account management

In all cases the primary focus is on your repayment capacity.

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13. How much of a deposit do I need?

A first time buyer will require a 10% deposit for property values up to €220,000. A 20% deposit will be required for amounts above this level.

We’ve a range of deposits and savings account options to help you save for your deposit. Call into your local branch or take a look at what savings and deposits options we have available.

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14. What else should I bear in mind when taking out a mortgage?

You’ll generally need to arrange home insurance and mortgage protection before drawing down your loan.

Home insurance is a property insurance which covers private homes, buildings and contents. The cost of home insurance often depends on what it would cost to rebuild your house and how much it would cost to replace all of the contents of the house. To get a quote today, simply drop into your local permanent tsb branch, call us on 1890 818 747 or visit our Home Insurance section to find out more.

When taking out a mortgage you’ll also need to consider how it’ll be paid off in the unlikely event of your death before the mortgage has been fully repaid. When you get a mortgage to buy your home, you’ll generally be required by your lender to take out mortgage insurance. This is a particular type of life assurance taken out for the term of the mortgage and is designed to pay it off on the death of the borrower or joint borrower before the end of the mortgage term.

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Discounted Managed Variable Rates (MVRs) FAQ

1. What are Discounted Managed Variable Rates (MVRs)?

These are our new business variable rate products and are structured in terms of the Loan to Value (Level of debt as a percentage of the property value).

They represent a 0.50% reduction on our MVRs for the first 12 months of the mortgage for all Loan to Values up to 80%.

After the initial 12 months the Discounted MVR matures to our MVRs (dependent on the mortgages original LTV). The MVR will be 0.50% above the Discounted MVR.

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2. What are the rates available?
LTV Bracket Discounted MVR Rate
Less than or equal to 50% 3.20%
Greater than 50% & less than or equal to 60% 3.30%
Greater than 60% & less than or equal to 70% 3.40%
Greater than 70% & less than or equal to 80% 3.50%

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After the initial 12 months your Discounted MVR matures to one of our MVRs (dependent on the mortgage LTV at drawdown), which are variable rates for our existing customers.

It's important to remember that Discounted MVRs are variable rates and can increase or decrease. The MVR may vary from time to time without regard to variations in any other interest rate used by permanent tsb.

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3. What are the MVR rates?
LTV Bracket MVR Rate
Less than or equal to 50% 3.70%
Greater than 50% & less than or equal to 60% 3.80%
Greater than 60% & less than or equal to 70% 3.90%
Greater than 70% & less than or equal to 80% 4.00%
Greater than 80% & less than or equal to 90% 4.20% 
Greater than 90% 4.30%

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4. What customers can qualify for a Discounted MVR?

All new variable rate Home Loan customers whose LTV is 80% or less and who receive mortgage approval on or after 16th July 2015. These include:

  • First Time Buyers
  • Next Time Buyers
  • Tracker Portability (new funds element)
  • Switcher customers
  • Mortgage top-up customers
  • Equity release customers

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5. Are Discounted MVRs available to existing permanent tsb customers, including those in arrears?

No, existing permanent tsb customers cannot avail of our Discounted MVRs.

We will however shortly be writing to qualifying permanent tsb Home Loan customers outlining how they can transfer to one of our Base MVRs, which is assessed based on their current Loan to Value

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6. Are Discounted MVRs available to Buy-to-Let customers?

No, Discounted MVRs are not available to Buy-to-Let customers.

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7. What about new customers whose loan-to-value is greater than 80%?

We currently do not offer discounts to our MVRs at this LTV, however customers looking to apply for a mortgage with an LTV greater than 80% can continue to apply for our MVR’s or our comprehensive suite of fixed rates.

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8. How will customers know if they are entitled to a Discounted MVR?

Talk to one of our dedicated mortgage consultants who will be able to advise you whether or not you can qualify to apply for one of our Discounted MVRs.

You can also contact Open24 on 1890 500 121 or +353 1 212 4101 and one of our qualified agents will also be able to advise you whether or not you can qualify to apply for one of our Discounted MVRs.

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9. What will happen if I want to change my approval to a Discounted MVR?

We will be writing to all Home Loan customers who have a Letter of Approval, but have not drawn down the loan, advising them about the launch of our Discounted MVRs.

If customer chooses the discounted variable rate they subsequently will receive a revised Letter of Approval confirming the change in rate and the mortgage Terms & Conditions, subject to satisfying full credit assessment and criteria.

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10. After 12 months will my repayments be affected when my mortgage matures to an MVR?

Your repayments will alter in line with the prevailing MVR at the date of maturity.

It’s important to remember that MVRs are variable rates and can increase or decrease. The MVR may vary from time to time without regard to variations in any other interest rate used by permanent tsb.

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11. How will I find out if my repayment changes during the term of my mortgage?

You will be notified in writing of any changes to both your rate and repayment. This will confirm your amended rate, repayment and the effective date.

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12. How long will my mortgage stay on the MVR?

Once your mortgage matures to a MVR this will remain on the MVR until a time where the you decide to change the terms and conditions of the product.

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13. Will the Bank convert any existing MVR customers to Discounted MVRs?

No. Discounted MVRs are only available to customers whose Letter of Approval is issued on or after 16th July 2015 and confirms that a Discounted MVR is the rate applying.

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