The jargon buster

We hate jargon.

We try very hard not to use jargon but sometimes there’s no alternative. So, to make absolutely sure we’re being 100% clear in what we say, we’ve put together this little list of definitions to help you understand the financial world. If there’s anything you see on our site that you just don’t get, please let us know.


Annual Percentrage Rate (APR) is the annual cost of borrowing over the term of a loan.

Arrangement fees

An amount charged by the lender for setting up your loan. Annual Percentrage Rate (APR) is the annual cost of borrowing over the term of a loan.

Bad credit

When your credit history shows you’ve had trouble making repayments in the past.


A fee earned by our team members, and paid by the lenders, for setting up a loan on that lender’s behalf.


A legal term meaning the seven-day period in which you can think over the terms of your loan. By law, we cannot contact you during that time, although you can still contact us if you want to.

Credit agreement

The legal contract in which your lender agrees to loan you a certain amount of money for a specified amount of time. It outlines all the rules and regulations associated with the contract, including the interest to be paid.

Credit rating / score

Lenders will ask a credit reference agency to look into your credit history. They use the information they get from that agency to give you a credit score. It’s a way for them to decide whether you’re likely to be able to meet your financial commitment to them.

Data protection

The Data Protection Act controls how personal/customer information is used by organisations or by government bodies.

Debt consolidation

Borrowing enough money to pay off all existing debt. Allows you to put everything you owe into one simple-to-manage package. Learn more about debt consolidation.


The difference between the home’s fair market value and the outstanding balance of everything still to be paid. Positive equity means the value exceeds the balance. Negative equity means the home is worth less than the sum secured on it.

Fixed rate / variable rate

Refers to how interest is charged. A fixed rate won’t vary over a specified amount of time. A variable rate may change, depending on the interest rate in general.

Guideline / tailored quote

When you first look into borrowing with us, we give you a guideline quote, so you have a rough idea of how much you’ll pay back. When you decide you want to proceed, we issue a tailored quote that takes into account more of your personal circumstances, so we can give you a much closer indication of the actual figure you’ll pay.


The banks or other financial institutions providing the loans.

Repayment term

The agreed number of months or years over which the loan is to be repaid.

Second mortgage / debt

A loan or debt guaranteed by the value of the borrower’s home or other property. The borrower agrees that their home or other property may be sold to pay any debt they are unable to repay by other means.

Second mortgage credit agreement

The written arrangement made between the borrower and the lender.


Property that a borrower agrees to use to back their loan arrangement. The borrower may have to sell this property if he or she can’t make repayments on the loan.

Unsecured (personal) loans

Loans that don’t require the borrower to offer security, usually for smaller amounts and shorter timescales than second mortgages.




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