News & Insight

Our expert views and commentary on what’s happening in the world of mortgages and sometimes beyond, along with our regular summary of what the papers say.

Barclays launches 10-year fixed rate mortgage below 2%

Locking into a long-term fixed rate can provide valuable peace of mind that you’ll know exactly what your mortgage payments will be for several years, regardless of what happens to interest rates during this time. ...

Base rate held at 0.1% in June

The Bank of England has held the base rate at 0.1% in June, despite speculation that rates could fall into negative territory to help shore up the economy. ...

Mortgage rates continue to fall

Several lenders have recently reduced their mortgage rates, benefiting homeowners looking to remortgage so they can reduce their monthly outgoings. ...

Base rate held in split decision

The Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee voted to keep interest rates at 0.75% again in November, although two of the nine members voted in favour of a cut. ...

Sainsbury’s stops mortgage sales

Sainsbury’s Bank has become the latest lender to exit the mortgage market, just six months after Tesco announced that it was pulling out of mortgages. ...

Base rate left on hold in run up to Brexit

The Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) voted unanimously to leave the base rate unchanged this month, at its last meeting before the UK is due to leave the European Union....

Demand for long-term fixed rate mortgages grows

Homebuyers and owners wanting the security of a long-term fixed rate mortgage now have a much wider range of options to choose from following the launch of several new 15-year deals. ...

Homeowners could save thousands by overpaying

Over half of homeowners never overpay on their mortgage, even though doing so could potentially save them thousands in interest and reduce their mortgage term. ...

Uncertainty causes mortgage market slowdown

First-time buyer and homemover mortgage numbers dropped slightly in June, with many people putting their plans on hold due to current political and economic uncertainty. ...

Interest rates unchanged in August

The Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) voted unanimously to keep the base rate at 0.75% in August amid ongoing Brexit uncertainty. ...

Plan your remortgage now to cut costs

More than £26 billion worth of mortgage deals will come to an end in October, according to research by Yorkshire Building Society, the largest monthly amount of mortgages maturing this year. ...

Base rate kept on hold in June

The Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee voted to keep interest rates on hold at 0.75% earlier this month, with ongoing Brexit uncertainty continuing to hamper economic growth. ...

Are you ready for higher interest rates?

Despite the fact that interest rates were kept on hold at 0.75% this month, the Bank of England has warned that rate increases could be “more frequent” if the economy picks up. ...

Are you stuck in the parent rent trap?

For the first time in nearly six decades, a child is at least as likely to be born into a rented home as a home owned by its parents, a report by insurer Royal London found. ...

What the papers said about the right time to switch

The Times reported this weekend that around £22.3 billion worth of mortgage deals will come to an end in April, meaning that potentially thousands of homeowners could be about to move onto more expensive Standard Variable Rates (SVR). ...

Interest rates kept on hold amidst Brexit uncertainty

The Bank of England voted unanimously to leave the base rate unchanged at 0.75% in March, with political and economic uncertainty making it impossible to know which way rates will move next. ...

Are you ready for April council tax increases?

Council tax bills are on their way up again from April, but if you’re worried about rising household bills, remortgaging could help reduce your outgoings. ...

What are your mortgage resolutions for 2019?

Your mortgage is likely to be your biggest monthly outgoing, so it’s a great place to start if you’re looking to cut costs. Here’s our rundown of some of the mortgage resolutions you might want to consider making. ...

New long-term fixes available for landlords

Landlords who are concerned about higher mortgage costs if interest rates rise have a wider range of fixed rate options to choose from following the launch of a new range of 10-year fixes. ...

Borrowers fix for longer following rate rise

Longer term 5 and 10-year fixed rate mortgages are becoming increasingly popular, as borrowers seek to protect themselves from further interest rate rises. ...

Mortgage lending increased in July

Gross mortgage lending reached £24.6bn in July, according to latest figures from trade body UK Finance, its highest level since March 2016. ...

What the papers said about rising rates

As expected, the weekend’s financial news focused primarily on last week’s decision by the Bank of England to increase the base rate for only the second time in a decade. ...

Bank of England raises base rate to 0.75%

The Bank of England has raised the base rate to 0.75%, meaning higher monthly mortgage costs for millions of homeowners on variable rate deals. ...

Difference between SVRs and fixed rates grows

The gap between the best fixed rate mortgage deals and lenders’ standard variable rates has widened substantially over the past nine years, according to the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). ...

Options improve for 95% remortgage deals

Homeowners with only a limited amount of equity now have a greater choice of remortgage options, with lenders including Virgin Money, Tesco and Atom Bank improving their offerings at this end of the market. ...

Remortgages up by a third in April

More than 40,000 homeowners remortgaged in April, according to latest figures from trade body UK Finance, up 36% compared to the same month last year. ...

Brexit could delay UK rate rises

Interest rates could be kept on hold for longer in the event of a “disorderly” Brexit, according to the Governor of the Bank of England....

What would a rate rise mean for you?

Expectations of a base rate rise in May were dampened following comments from the Bank of England governor Mark Carney, but it’s still vital for homeowners to consider the impact of higher rates. ...

What the papers said about preparing for change

With suggestions of an interest rate rise, possibly as soon as next month, the financial press reported this weekend on the levels of increased activity in the mortgage market. ...

What the base rate rise means for landlords

Much of the focus since the base rate rise last week has been on what impact the increase has on homeowners, but it also has implications for landlords, many of whom have already had to adapt to several other changes this year. ...

Bank of England raises interest rates

The Bank of England has raised the base rate for the first time in more than a decade, meaning higher mortgage costs for millions of homeowners on variable rate deals. ...

Has the housing market reached a plateau?

Mortgage lending reached £22.1 billion in June, up 9% on the previous month, but the challenging economic situation could dampen activity going forward. ...

Are you ‘Just About Managing’?

Over 1.4m people are struggling to pay their mortgages, but there are plenty of steps borrowers can take to help make their monthly payments more manageable. ...

Interest rates left unchanged at 0.25%

The Bank of England left the base rate unchanged at 0.25% in it’s May meeting, but warned that rising living costs and falling wages will mean “challenging” times for many households this year. ...

2016 Review and Outlook for 2017

Last year isn’t one any of us are likely to forget in a hurry thanks to Brexit, but amidst all the political turmoil, homebuyers and owners enjoyed some of the lowest mortgage rates ever recorded. ...

What the papers said about a New Year for mortgages

With a New Year comes a new raft of new mortgage deals, and a couple of high street lenders have kicked off 2016 by launching some ultra-low fixed rates to tempt those of us re-organising our finances. ...

What the papers say – 14th and 15th June 2014

With the Council of Mortgage Lenders reporting that around 67% of mortgage are currently on lender Standard Variable Rates, and Bank of England Governor Mark Carney’s recent comments regarding the potential for rates to increase earlier than expected, brokers are anticipating a busy period for remortgaging. Experts in the Sunday Times predicted a spike in fixed rates and urged borrowers to act now to protect themselves, perhaps by considering a l...

Debt charity warns of rise in mortgage arrears

National debt charity Consumer Credit Counselling Service (CCCS) has warned today that many homeowners risk falling into mortgage arrears this year due to budget pressures such as high inflation and wage freezes.It predicts that a rise in interest rates, which will lead to higher monthly mortgage payments for thousands of borrowers, will see many people struggling to keep on top of their mortgage payments.The charity said that last year it counse...

What’s the right mortgage deal for you if rates rise?

The debate around when interest rates will rise and by how much has continued in recent weeks and many borrowers have already decided that it’s time to secure themselves a fixed rate deal to protect against future rate rises. Thousands of others however will still be wondering what to do and trying to figure out when it’s the right time to review their current deal – especially those borrowers who have enjoyed low mortgage payments for the last c...

Mortgage affordability at its best for 10 years says Barclays

Mortgage affordability has hit its best level for 10 years, according to new research from Barclays.Having analysed more than one million customer accounts it found that people are currently paying 15.4% of their take home pay to cover their monthly mortgage payment – the lowest level since Barclays began the regular analysis ten years ago.The improved affordability was attributed largely to the current low interest rate environment – the UK has ...

What the papers say- 19th and 20th February 2011

This weekend’s financial press focused once again on the anticipated rise in interest rates. Mortgage brokers in the Independent, Sunday Express and Sunday Times reported that a lot of borrowers are now looking to secure a fixed rate to limit their exposure to increases, but many warned that they may have already missed the bottom of the market. Fixing is not for everyone of course, and as the gap between fixed and variable rates widens, many may...

UK inflation jumps to 3.7% in December

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said today that the UK Consumer Prices Index (CPI) annual inflation rate rose to 3.7% in December from 3.3% in November.  This was the biggest ever month-on-month rise and will put more pressure on the Bank of England to raise interest rates.According to the ONS, air transport and rising fuel, utility and food prices were the biggest drivers of inflation last month. Inflation has risen in each of the last ...

CBI says UK interest rates need to rise in 2011

Higher-than-expected inflation means the Bank of England should start raising interest rates from the spring of next year, according to latest forecasts by the Confederation of British Industry (CBI).With recent pressure from energy and commodity prices as well as the impact of higher  VAT in the New Year, the CBI predicts that inflation will “significantly exceed the Bank of England’s 2% target in 2011”.  As a result, it believes that interest r...

What the papers say- 27th and 28th November 2010

The Financial Times reported this weekend on the increasingly attractive mortgages deals being offered by lenders such as Woolwich and Skipton, and borrowers were urged to consider their options now, particularly as some deals will be designed to increase year end business and therefore won’t be around for long. Choosing the right deal can be a difficult decision, so the Times looked at alternative options including products that allow you to sw...

UK inflation rises in October – what next for mortgage rates?

UK inflation rose last month as official figures revealed yesterday showed a surprise jump in the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) from 3.1 per cent to 3.2 per cent in October. The CPI measure has been at or above 3 per cent for the whole of 2010 so what impact will this month’s increase have on interest rates and the cost of mortgages?Last week, we had the inflation report which came out a few days after the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committe...

New deals on offer for struggling first time buyers

Figures released by the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) this week showed that first time buyers’ share of the mortgage market fell in July to its lowest level for 3 years.  The number of mortgages taken out by First Time Buyers in July stood at 19,400 – down from 19,700 in June and from 20,100 July 2009. CML’s figures also show that buyers of their first home are, on average, putting down a deposit of 24% – this equates to around £40,000 depend...

Forecast of Base Rate Rising to 8% within 2 years!

The think tank, Policy Exchange, this week grabbed the headlines by bucking the trend and issuing a distinctly alternative view of what could happen with interest rates.Whilst many have suggested that Base rate has some time to go at the current low levels (see our recent blog), Dr Andrew Lilico, Chief Economist at Policy Exchange has painted quite a different picture.  He suggests that following another period of contraction the economy could be...

What the papers say- 4th August 2010

The debate surrounding interest rate predictions continued today, with two former policymakers warning that base rate could rise to as much as 3% by this time next year, following a period of economic stability.  As pointed out in both the Times and the Telegraph, this differs greatly from the majority of forecasts for a longer period of low rates, and will come as a shock to many homeowners.  Rather fortuitously then, the Daily Mail reported th...

When will interest rates rise?

The last month has seen some interesting news and views on the subject of interest rates and when we may see them on the up again.At the Monetary Policy Committee’s July meeting, the Bank Rate was left yet again unchanged at 0.50% - the 16th month in a row.  However, MPC member Andrew Sentence maintained his contrary position from the previous month and was the only member calling for an immediate increase of 0.25%.His call to start raising rates...

What the papers say- 3rd and 4th July 2010

It was time to dust off the crystal ball this weekend, as talk once again turned to future interest rates. Opinions varied as to the extent of any potential changes in rates and house prices, with some experts predicting a double dip over the next couple of years due in part to a lack of available mortgage credit. Others agreed that the market is certainly set to cool down but had a more positive outlook, suggesting that low interest rates will c...

What the papers say - 19th and 20th June 2010

Interest only mortgages are not quite extinct but they are certainly becoming harder to find, as discussed in the Times this weekend. Scottish Widows has become the latest lender to restrict interest only lending to loans below £500,000, bringing it in line with other parts of the Lloyds Banking Group. Lenders including HSBC and Santander now limit the LTV to 75%, while others have tightened up on their list of suitable repayment vehicles. Expert...

What the papers say- 5th and 6th June 2010

The tightening up of interest only lending was big news in this weekend’s financial press, following the announcement by Northern Rock that they will no longer accept future inheritance, dividends, capital repayments or bonuses as suitable repayment vehicles. The Lloyds Group has also recently introduced higher rates for interest only customers, whilst other lenders including Abbey and Coventry have restricted the loan to value to 75%. Experts in...

What the papers say- 17th and 18th April 2010

There was support in this weekend’s financial press for Labour’s plan to turn Northern Rock back into a building society if they win the election, with the Telegraph and Independent on Sunday looking at the benefits of the mutual in terms of both the products and service they offer. Some of the most competitive rates are offered by building societies such as Hanley Economic and Nationwide, although experts pointed out that this is not always the ...

What the papers say- 6th and 7th March 2010

Borrowers who rush to secure a fixed rate when the base rate starts to rise could end up paying over the odds, warned experts in the Observer this weekend. Despite some lenders dropping their rates recently, brokers are still advising homeowners to consider a tracker mortgage unless they are particularly nervous about increasing payments. Those who are taking advantage of low rates are urged to overpay now and reduce the shock of future rate rise...

What the papers say- 3rd March 2010

The Daily Express reported today on recent research by the Post Office, which revealed that at least 3 million borrowers in the UK do not know what interest rate they are currently paying. Thousands of homeowners assume that Standard Variable Rate is the best deal for them, but with many variable rates now above 4%, experts urged people to review their options and consider a medium term fixed rate to protect against future rate rises.  An increa...

What the papers say- 27th and 28th February 2010

There was further bad news for First Time Buyers this weekend, with the Times and Telegraph revealing that Halifax is shortly to withdraw from the guarantor market. This type of mortgage is an important option for those looking to get onto the property ladder for the first time, and the good news is that lenders such as RBS, Co-Op and Nationwide continue to offer these deals. Experts advised however that criteria is tight, with lenders looking to...

What the papers say- 20th and 21st February 2010

Recent improvements in fixed and tracker rates once again grabbed some of the headlines in this weekend’s financial press, with the Telegraph and Mail on Sunday sounding the alarm for borrowers who reverted to Standard Variable Rate in the last 18 months and have seen their payments increase over the last few weeks. Whilst experts previously advised people to stay on low variable rates, it would seem that anyone who doesn’t consider changing now ...

What the papers say- 23rd and 24th January 2010

Last week’s announcement by Skipton Building Society of their intention to increase their Standard Variable Rate from 3.50% to 4.95% led unsurprisingly to widespread coverage in this weekend’s financial press. The Society had previously maintained a ‘mortgage promise’, guaranteeing that their variable rate would be no more than 3% above the Bank of England Base Rate, but has removed this ceiling in response to ‘exceptional market conditions’. Exp...

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