What the papers say- 26th – 27th September 2009

Alternative methods of purchasing a property were the order of the day this weekend, with The Guardian reporting on the return of the 100% mortgage, albeit in the form of a shared ownership scheme. The Mansfield Building Society has teamed up with the South Yorkshire Housing Association to offer the product, allowing buyers to purchase 60% of a property without a deposit, whilst paying rent on the remaining 40%. The Independent looked at lenders who offer green mortgages, and the Mail on Sunday discussed the increase in the number of self build purchases this year.  The Sunday Times revealed that some lenders are back to their old tricks, offering discount mortgages that track their own Standard Variable Rate rather than the Bank of England Base Rate. Whilst these deals currently offer some very attractive rates, experts warn that lenders have not always passed on movements in bank rate to their customers.  The Independent on Sunday discussed the pros and cons of buying properties at auction, following FSA figures revealing that 16,000 repossessed properties were sold at auction in the second quarter of this year. The lack of chain can of course be an advantage in terms of speeding up the process, however there is a much higher possibility of gazumping due to a legal obligation to accept the highest offer, as well as a risk that the lender will put a retention on funds if a property requires major work.  Elsewhere in savings news, the impending increase in Isa cash allowance for the over 50’s was still the hot topic. The Guardian reported that online bank Egg has confirmed it will not offer the new limit until next April, while other providers such as A&L have will reopen their fixed rate Isas for a limited period. Nationwide and Newcastle Building Societies have announced they will allow savers to open an additional product for savers to invest their remaining allowance.

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