Compare the best fixed-rate mortgages UK

Fix your mortgage rate and start budgeting with confidence.

Whether you’re buying your first home or remortgaging, it’s important to understand how fixed-rate mortgages work and whether they are right for you.

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What is a fixed-rate mortgage?

A fixed-rate mortgage has an interest rate that stays the same for an agreed period. The fixed period is typically between 2, 3 and 5 years, although some lenders may go up to 10 or 15 years.

If you like peace of mind knowing your monthly repayment amount won’t change for the duration of your deal, a fixed-rate mortgage might be right for you.

How does a fixed rate benefit borrowers?

A fixed-rate mortgage benefits those who want to budget with confidence and don’t want their repayments to rise due to higher interest rates. These include first-time buyers adapting to the routine of making regular repayments and investors wanting to ensure their cash flow isn’t affected by rising interest rates.

If you’re lucky enough to fix your rate at the bottom of the market, you can reap the benefit of a secure and competitive rate when the rest of the market bears the risk of higher interest rates.

Example: First-time buyer scenario

Phoebe and her husband have decided to purchase a property in Bristol. After speaking with a local mortgage broker, Phoebe learns she needs to borrow £300,000 to complete the purchase.

After comparing different mortgages recommended by her broker, Phoebe is torn about whether they should opt for a fixed-rate or a variable-rate mortgage. Phoebe knows that she and her husband anticipate having children in the near future, and she is concerned about how they would manage their repayments if interest rates rose.

While she is drawn to the competitive features offered with a particular variable-rate mortgage, such as a 100% offset account and the ability to make additional repayments without penalty, Phoebe believes that the certainty and security of a fixed-rate mortgage will better suit their lifestyle.

She decides to lock in a competitive rate of 3.99% over a 5-year term.

* This is a fictional, but realistic, example.

Who is eligible for a fixed-rate mortgage?

As with all types of credit, you can only apply for a mortgage if you’re at least 18 years old. There are no specific eligibility criteria for a fixed-rate mortgage compared to other mortgage types. But you’re more likely to be accepted if:

  • You have a deposit of at least 5% to 10% of the property’s value.
  • You’re in a stable job with a regular income.
  • You have a good credit rating.
  • You have minimal existing debts.

When you apply for a mortgage, lenders examine your bank statements and payslips to assess how much you earn each month, as well as your spending habits. They’ll look at how much you spend on regular household bills and other costs to help them determine whether you can afford a mortgage.

The amount you want to borrow is another factor lenders consider. If you’re applying for a fairly large mortgage and your lender believes you would be overstretching yourself financially, you could be turned away.

How much does a fixed-rate mortgage cost?

How much a fixed-rate mortgage costs depends on several factors. These include:

  • The interest rate. This will give you a good indication of how expensive your repayments will be. Keep in mind that the initial rate will only last for a few years, depending on the deal you choose. If you don’t remortgage after this time, you’ll move on to your lender’s standard variable rate (SVR), which will likely be higher.
  • Arrangement fees. Many mortgages come with an arrangement fee that could be as much as £2,000. In some cases, choosing a mortgage with a higher interest rate and no fee could work out cheaper than a mortgage with a low interest rate but a high fee. To help you decide, calculate the total amount you’ll spend during the introductory term.
  • Valuation fee. Your lender will want to value the property and ensure it’s worth the amount you want to borrow. You will usually pay a fee for this.
  • Early repayment charges. If you need to get out of your existing mortgage deal early, you might have to pay a fee. These can range between 1% and 5% of the outstanding mortgage amount and can work out to be expensive.

What are the pros and cons of a fixed-rate mortgage?

There’s a range of benefits and drawbacks associated with fixed-rate mortgages, and it’s important to weigh them up before deciding what works for you.


  • Repayment certainty. Opting for a fixed-rate mortgage offers peace of mind in knowing what your repayments will be. This allows you to budget more effectively as repayments remain the same until the fixed-rate period ends.
  • Flexible mortgage terms. Fixed-rate mortgages are available from most UK lenders with a variety of terms.


  • Limited features. Some fixed-rate mortgages don’t have the flexibility of variable-rate mortgages.
  • Early repayment costs. If you decide to leave a fixed-rate mortgage before the end of the specified term, you’ll typically face high fees.
  • Lower rates. If the Bank of England slashes the base rate, you could end up with a higher rate than that of variable-rate mortgages on the market.

When is it not a good idea to opt for a fixed rate?

As interest rates are unpredictable, you shouldn’t take out a fixed-rate mortgage if you are simply trying to beat the market. This should not form the basis of your decision. A fixed interest rate may not be a good idea if you:

  • Intend to sell your property in the near future.
  • Want competitive and flexible features.
  • Are aware that interest rates overall are going to fall.

Different fixed-rate scenarios

Let’s look at some different situations to see if a fixed-rate mortgage is suitable.

I’m planning to move houses soon. Does a fixed-rate mortgage suit me?

If you’re moving in the next couple of months and your current mortgage deal has finished, it might be worth staying on your lender’s SVR and then taking out a new mortgage on the new property.

If you apply for a fixed-rate mortgage now and move a few months later, you’ll either need to pay a high early repayment fee to get out of your deal early or see whether you can port your mortgage to the new property.

I’m currently stuck with a fixed-rate mortgage with a high interest rate. Can I remortgage?

Unfortunately, remortgaging during the fixed term period usually incurs an early repayment charge, which can be expensive. However, if your current interest rate is very high, it could still work out more cost-effective to remortgage to a lower rate, even when you factor in the fee. It can be worth speaking to a mortgage broker to help you decide.

Expert comment: Fixed-rate mortgages can come with high early repayment charges, so it’s important to consider whether you might move in a couple of years before tying yourself into a longer-term fix.

Fixed-rate mortgages can come with high early repayment charges, so consider whether you might move in a couple of years before tying yourself into a longer-term fix.”

Rachel Wait, personal finance expert

Alternative borrowing options

Some of the other mortgage types you could consider are outlined below:

Tracker mortgages

A tracker mortgage is a type of variable rate mortgage, which means your interest rate and monthly repayments can go up and down. Tracker mortgages typically track the Bank of England base rate, only slightly higher.

This means that if the base rate goes up, so will your repayments, but if the base rate goes down, your monthly repayments will also drop. If you want to take out a tracker mortgage, check whether you could still afford your repayments if interest rates were to rise.

Tracker mortgage deals typically last 2 or 5 years.

Offset mortgages

An offset mortgage enables you to link your savings account to your mortgage. Your savings account balance is then offset against the amount you owe on your mortgage each month. This reduces the amount of interest you pay on your mortgage, but you won’t receive interest on your savings.

For example, if you had savings of £50,000 and a mortgage of £180,000, you could link your accounts and you’d only pay interest on £130,000. This saving can help you lower your monthly repayments or shorten your mortgage term.

Green mortgages

Green mortgages are for those who want to purchase an energy-efficient home or make their own home more environmentally friendly. As an incentive, you might get cashback or a lower interest rate on your mortgage.

Advice for first-time buyers

Before buying your first home, it’s important to think about the following:

  • Save a large deposit if you can. The best mortgage rates are for those with a deposit of at least 40% of the property price. The more you can save, the better.
  • Check you can afford the monthly repayments. When deciding which mortgage to go for, do the maths to check what your monthly repayments would be and whether you could comfortably afford this.
  • Budget for other costs. There are many costs involved when buying a home. These include stamp duty, survey fees, removal costs, solicitor or conveyancer fees, buildings insurance and mortgage fees. Make sure you’ve factored these into your budget.
  • Seek advice. If you’re not sure which mortgage is best for you, it’s worth speaking to a fee-free mortgage broker who can help assess your financial situation and find the most appropriate mortgage deal.

Tips for when your term is coming to an end

  • When you take out a fixed-rate mortgage, it’s important to note when the term of that deal will end.
  • It’s worth exploring your options around 6 months before your deal ends so you’re ready to remortgage to a new deal as soon as your current one ends. This remortgage can be with your current lender or a new one.
  • Don’t forget to factor in the fees you’ll need to pay on your new mortgage.
  • Don’t be tempted to stay on your lender’s SVR – this is the rate you’ll automatically be moved on to when your current deal ends. But interest rates are generally less competitive, and you’ll usually save money by moving to a new deal.

Bottom line

Ultimately, you might want to consider a fixed-rate mortgage if you have reasons to value the stability and predictability that a fix represents. If, as in the first-time buyer scenario we’ve outlined above, you’re planning to start a family or preparing for other long-term financial commitments, being able to budget more easily may be something you value.

Just make sure you’re aware of the fees that typically accompany fixed-rate mortgages.

Frequently asked questions

Overall representative example
If you borrow £178,000 mortgage over 25 years initially at 4.63% fixed for 60 months reverting to 6.99% variable for term. 60 monthly payments of £1002.56 and 240 monthly payments of £1214.16. Total amount payable £351,932.00 includes loan amount, interest of £173,552, valuation fees of £0 and product fees of £0. The overall cost for comparison is 6.2% APRC representative.
We show offers we can track - that's not every product on the market...yet. Unless we've said otherwise, products are in no particular order. The terms "best", "top", "cheap" (and variations of these) aren't ratings, though we always explain what's great about a product when we highlight it. This is subject to our terms of use. When you make major financial decisions, consider getting independent financial advice. Always consider your own circumstances when you compare products so you get what's right for you. Most of the data in Finder's comparison tables has the source: Moneyfacts Group PLC. In other cases, Finder has sourced data directly from providers.
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To make sure you get accurate and helpful information, this guide has been edited by Joselle Delos Reyes as part of our fact-checking process.
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Written by


Rachel Wait is a freelance journalist and has been writing about personal finance for more than a decade, covering everything from insurance to mortgages. She has written for a range of personal finance websites and national newspapers, including The Observer, The Mail on Sunday, The Sun and the Evening Standard. Rachel is a keen baker in her spare time. See full bio

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Matthew Boyle is a banking and mortgages publisher at Finder. He has a 7-year history of publishing helpful guides to assist consumers in making better decisions. In his spare time, you will find him walking in the Norfolk countryside admiring the local wildlife. See full bio

Matthew's expertise
Matthew has written 244 Finder guides across topics including:
  • Helping first-time buyers apply for a mortgage
  • Comparing bank accounts and highlighting useful features
  • Publishing easy-to-understand guides

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