The Daily Mail reported today that the cost of buying a home has increased by £70,000 since Labour came into power in 1997. Gradual increases in Stamp Duty tax and house prices have both contributed and, although interest rates have dropped to a similar level as ’97, an increase in mortgage size means that the average buyer will pay £99,000 in interest as opposed to £36,700 13 years ago. Despite the increased cost involved in buying, The Daily Mirror revealed that lenders approved 35,000 mortgages for homebuyers in February, a massive increase of 50% on this time last year, with a 50% increase in loans to First Time Buyers. Elsewhere the Mail also looked at the growing popularity of offset deals. With lenders such as First Direct narrowing the gap between these and standard mortgages, as well as the poor interest rates currently being offered on savings accounts, offset mortgages are set to become more attractive, particularly so for high earners faced with the new 50% rate of tax.
What the papers say- 14th April 2010