A credit score alone is not the only information that a potential mortgage lender will look at to determine whether or not to process an application. History of outstanding debts and the fact of a person having steady and a long history of income are other major contributors.
However the credit score will likely be used to determine the level of risk of a borrower and therefore the rate of interest that may be borrowed at. The lowest rates of interest are offered to those with the best credit scores, while those with low credit scores receive the worst offers with high interest and higher monthly repayments for the same value of mortgage. In addition to this however, lenders will take the amount of a down payment or deposit into consideration. This can affect the level of interest on the mortgage in a similar fashion the credit score as outlined above.
Even though there is no real minimum credit score level that is required to obtain a mortgage, borrowers that are high risk propositions in the eyes of a lender with low credit scores, will be subject to increased up-front fees in order to be approved at all. The likelihood is high that a larger percentage down payment would be required for lower bracket credit score applicants in addition to high rates of interest. The result of Subprime lending can mean crippling repayments whereby the applicant is forced to decline their own application due to the high costs involved.
However, rates, fees, terms and conditions and other aspects of credit vary greatly from country to country, lender to lender. Generally speaking across the board, higher risk always means higher cost.
It is always worth finding up to date information on a credit file if thinking of applying for a mortgage in order to gauge a rough idea of what interest will be paid locally. In addition to this by checking errors on credit history, removing out of date entries may increase the overall credit score which could have a positive effect on the mortgage offers received.