What the papers say - 2nd and 3rd May 2009

Future interest rates were the subject of much discussion in this weekend’s financial press, with The Guardian and Sunday Times reporting that a predicted rise later this year has prompted more borrowers to look at longer term fixed rates. The Mail on Sunday continued this theme by looking at ways of getting the best mortgage deal possible, examining the range of tracker rates available that give borrowers the option to switch to a fixed rate at a later date without penalty.

Nationwide’s decision to introduce a two-tier variable rate came up repeatedly, with many industry experts questioning whether the building society can continue to claim that they treat all customers equally. Northern Rock also came under fire, with the Sunday Telegraph revealing that they have tightened their affordability criteria, making it more difficult for homeowners to borrow back the overpayments they previously made under the terms of their flexible mortgage deal.

First Time Buyers are still struggling to afford their first property despite the extended stamp duty window and falling house prices, reported the Independent on Sunday, as tight lending criteria and restrictions on Loan to Value continue to be the main stumbling blocks. Those trying to sell their properties are also suffering according to the Observer, with many now turning to online auction site eBay as a last ditch attempt to find a buyer.

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