The weekend money pages addressed and analysed a number of mortgage-related issues, namely the recent bad behaviour of some lenders and the options now available to different types of borrower. The Financial Times noted that many borrowers are having to meet tougher lending terms, just as the cost of mortgages has started to ease, as banks restrict their best deals to a shrinking pool of customers. Reportedly, 60 per cent is the new 75 per cent as previously, with a deposit of 25 per cent you could get any deal but now you need 40 per cent.
The Observer looked at how nervous lenders are taking a tougher stance on applications for interest-only mortgages, for fear that borrowers will be unable to repay their original loans at maturity, whilst the Mail on Sunday advised borrowers who have tracker mortgages to take advantage of falling rates and overpay on their loan to cut years, and interest, off their mortgage. The Mail on Sunday also had a useful four-step guide for potential first-time buyers, listing Bank of Ireland’s ‘First Start’ loan as the only mortgage product available with just a 5 per cent deposit.
Finally, the Sunday Times revealed that mortgage lenders are making it harder for struggling homeowners to take a break from payments as job losses start to bite. A questions and answers piece targeted payment holiday and payment protection insurance issues.