The last few years have been a difficult time for the mortgage market and the industry and borrowers alike have become used to the fact that there have been fewer mortgage options available as a result.
However there have been some positive moves in the market in 2012 and some mortgage lenders are even showing a degree of innovation. Just recently Norwich & Peterborough launched a new ten year fixed rate mortgage that it claims to be the lowest ever. Woolwich also decided to add a ten year fixed rate to its range.
These launches recognise that interest rates remain at an historic low and so whilst the point at which Base rate will climb is up for debate, everyone knows that it must rise eventually. An attractive long term fix would help protect against that but it is still only likely to appeal to a limited number of borrowers due to the need to lock in for such a long term.
First time buyers have suffered from the tightening in lending conditions more than most but things have shifted slightly. We are seeing more evidence of mortgage options for those with smaller deposits with Newcastle BS being another lender to recently launch mortgage deals to 95% of the purchase price.
These products can still be tricky to qualify for but as competition improves in this sector of the market then availability and price should also improve. It just goes to underline the fact that there are some options out there even if the rule remains that the bigger the deposit the better the choice.