What is a mortgage deed?

In this brief blog, we are going to talk about what a mortgage deed is, where you can find your mortgage deed and provide you with a sample of a mortgage deed.

What is a mortgage deed?

A mortgage deed is a document that formally secures and charges money against a property. It is drawn up by the mortgage lender and must be signed by the borrower.

Most home purchases in the UK will happen with the help of a mortgage. This means that the mortgage lenders interest in the property must be protected and mortgage lenders do this through a mortgage deed. You should read the mortgage deed very carefully as you will be bound by any restrictions contained therein.

Some of the restrictions mortgage lenders may place in a mortgage deed include:

Restricting the borrowers right to undertake any structural alterations without giving consent first

Not to let the property – or part with possession of even part (for example taking lodgers) without securing permissions

Access and rights of way for the property.

Lenders will sometimes add ‘special’ conditions. These tend to require that recommendations from their building surveyor – this may be to carry out particular repairs on structural parts of the building etc 

To ensure you have adequate home insurance for the minimum replacement value or cost to build.

Whether or not the owner holds right to any roads that cross the property.

If you break any of the terms of the mortgage which are in the mortgage deed the mortgage lender may repossess the property.

If a borrower is taking out a high loan to value mortgage then some mortgage lenders may require the borrower to take out a mortgage indemnity insurance which insures the mortgage lender should the borrower default on the mortgage. The mortgage lender will be able to claim from the mortgage company should they suffer a loss after the borrower defaults on the high loan to value mortgage.

What are the deeds to the house?

A mortgage deed is a document which shows who owns a property. When you buy a property the buyer and seller will sign the mortgage deed in order for the ownership to transfer from the seller to the buyer. If you have a mortgage then the mortgage deed will be kept by the mortgage lender and only returned to the homeowner once the mortgage has been paid off.

What is a standard mortgage deed?

A standard mortgage deed is about one or 2 pages. It will require your signature to confirm that you are happy to proceed and own the property on the basis of the mortgage offer you have received from the mortgage lender. Once the mortgage deed is signed, the document becomes legally binding.

Who has the mortgage deed?

The mortgage deed is kept by the mortgage lender is there is a mortgage on the property and will only be returned to the homeowner once the mortgage on the property has been paid off in full. You can request for copies of the mortgage deed which the mortgage lender may prepare for you for a fee. If there is no mortgage on the property then the deeds to the property may be in your possession, at your home or with the conveyancer who arranged for your property purchase.

Who can be a witness for mortgage deed?

A mortgage deed can be witnessed by anybody but the signatory’s spouse or partner or a family member.The mortgage deed witness must not have an interest in the property and should not have a personal interest in the provisions of the document. A mortgage deed witness should be aged 18 and over although legally the witness can be less than 18 years of age. Anyone who is a party to the mortgage deed cannot act as a witness to another party’s signature.

Does a deed mean you own the house?

If you have the mortgage deed and it is in your name then it conforms your ownership of the house. When you sell the property the mortgage deed will be transferred from your name to the person who is buying the property.

Can the same person witness two signatures on mortgage deed?

Yes, the same person can witness two signatures on a mortgage deed but only if each of these signatures is independently attested.

How do I get a copy of my house deeds?

To get a copy of your house deeds you should first find out if your house is registered with the land registry and then download a copy of the title register. You’ll need this to find the property’s title number and to see if HM Land Registry holds a copy of the deeds.

If Land registry hold a copy of the house deeds you should then fill in the deeds request form.

Is Land Registry proof of ownership?

Land registry may hold proof of ownership but this isn’t always the case. Your mortgage deed may be held by your lender. If you want to get proof of ownership then you should consider asking the mortgage lender for proof of ownership and they will send you photocopies of the mortgage deed but this may be for a fee.

Sample of a mortgage deed

A mortgage deed from the family building society

You are a member of the Society and you acknowledge that you have received the Loan Amount. 

2 You accept the Mortgage Offer made by us. 

3 The Society’s Mortgage Conditions 2017 (the Mortgage Conditions) form part of this Mortgage. You confirm you have received a copy of the Mortgage Conditions.

 4 The Mortgage is also made for securing further advances but we are not obliged to make any. 

5 You, with full title guarantee 

5.1 Charge the Property by way of legal mortgage with the payment to us of all moneys payable by you under or otherwise secured by this Mortgage. 

5.2 Assign or agree to assign to us the full benefit of every covenant agreement right certificate guarantee indemnity or undertaking held relating to the Property. 

6 You apply to enter the following restriction in the proprietorship register of the registered estate:

 “No disposition of the registered estate by the proprietor of the registered estate or by the proprietor of any registered charge, not being a charge registered before the entry of this restriction, is to be registered without a written consent signed by the proprietor for the time being of the charge dated …………./…………./……………………. in favour of National Counties Building Society, referred to in the Charges Register”.


For witness*



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In this brief guide, we discussed what a mortgage deed is. If you have any questions or comments please let us know.

If you need financial advice and you live in the UK then you could contact the Money Advice service over the phone or via chat for impartial advice.

You can also contact the debt charity “Step Change” if you are in debt and need help.