Time to Fix Your Mortgage
While it is only a matter of time before mortgage rates started rising, it’s always difficult to spot the bottom of the cycle. It may still be some time before the Bank of England see the need to raise interest rates, but with the cost of funding fixed rates pre-empting any change in bank rate, there are already signs that fixed rates could cost more.
The cost to lenders to fund some fixed rates is now higher than earlier this month despite the introduction of quantitative easing measures, which it was hoped would help reduce borrowing costs, and this has already had some knock on effects. Less than two weeks ago, the cheapest 5 year fixed rate was a fantastic 3.95%, one of the lowest 5 year fixed rate mortgages seen in the UK. However, today, the best you can achieve is 4.24%, still attractive but an increase that will cost a borrower with a £200,000 interest only mortgage an extra £2,900 over 5 yrs.
These headline grabbing rates are also usually reserved for borrowers who have at least 25%, and often 40% equity in their homes, and as house prices continue to fall, fewer homeowners will qualify.
Those borrowers that don’t qualify for the lowest rates face a very difficult decision. Do they take what is historically still a competitive fixed rate, or do they save money now and stay on their lenders standard variable rate (svr). If they opt for the svr they are likely to see their equity eroded further, and run the risk that fixed rates in the future could be considerably higher.
Many lenders will not lend to borrowers with less than a 15% stake in their home, so fixed rates are harder to find. Richard Morea from www.lcplc.co.uk advises, ‘Whilst it’s unlikely that rates will climb steeply in the near future, a combination of any rise, and the continued erosion of equity mean that whichever rate you qualify for, now is the time to consider a fixed deal, and take action to secure it!’
For more information and no-fee advice, borrowers should call free on 0800 373300.
Notes to Editor:
London & Country (L&C) is the UK’s leading no-fee mortgage broker. Based in Bath, it provides whole of market advice via telephone and post to clients nationwide. As well as residential mortgages, it also specialises in the Buy-to-Let and adverse-credit sectors.
L&C is a Climate Neutral company and for the last seven years has invested in climate friendly projects and tree-planting to help offset its emissions and those of its customers. For more information, go to www.lcplc.co.uk/green
L&C has won numerous awards including:
Best Mortgage IFA/Adviser of the Year – Money Marketing, 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2008
Best Technology Adviser – Money Marketing 2007
Best Mortgage Broker outside London – Mortgage Strategy, 2004 and 2005
Best National Broker – Mortgage Introducer 2005, 2006 and 2007
Best Overall Broker – Mortgage Introducer 2005
Overall broker of the year – Pink Home Loans, 2006 and 2007
Top 100 company in the Sunday Times Fast Track 100 for 2004 and 2005
Business of the Year – The Bath Business Awards 2005
Growth Strategy of the Year – National Business Awards (Wales and West) 2008
Business Leader (Broker) – British Mortgage Awards - 2008
Online Mortgage IFA of the Year – Financial Adviser - 2008
Richard Morea, Technical Manager
Office: 01225 341312
Mobile: 07970 885168
David Hollingworth, Head of Communications
Office: 01225 341211
Mobile: 07710 634044
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- Technical Manager
- London & Country Mortgages
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