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.

Mortgage rates fall to historic lows

Rock bottom mortgage rates mean that borrowers can now choose from a wide range of two-year fixed rate mortgages at less than 1%, or five-year fixed rate mortgages at just over 1%. ...

Home movers overtake first time buyers

Nearly half of all mortgage lending made in the first three months of this year went to home movers , according to the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the highest share since records began. ...

Government begins roll out of First Homes scheme

The Government has begun the roll out of its new ‘First Homes’ scheme, designed to give first time buyers a leg up onto the property ladder by providing discounts on new homes. ...

Rise in new homes receiving top energy efficiency grades

More than four out of every five new homes completed in England and Wales in the final quarter of last year achieved one of the top highest energy efficiency ratings, according to latest Government data. ...

Stamp duty holiday extension

The stamp duty holiday has been extended until the end of June, benefiting thousands of homeowners who were at risk of missing the original deadline of 31st March. ...

Your seven-step moving home checklist

There’s no escaping the fact that moving house can be stressful, but a bit of careful planning will help make the process less painful. ...

New Help to Buy scheme for 2021-2023

The current Help to Buy scheme will be replaced by a new scheme in April, which will only be available to first-time buyers and will impose regional price caps on eligible properties. ...

Market update November 2020

It’s been another busy month for the mortgage market, with house price growth showing no sign of slowing. ...

Property activity continues to rise in October

Demand from property buyers showed no signs of slowing in October, pushing up house prices across all parts of the UK, according to the latest RICS UK Residential survey. ...

Fixed mortgage rates start to rise

Homebuyers and those looking to remortgage who want the security of a fixed rate deal may want to act sooner rather than later, as rates have started to tick up in recent weeks. ...

Government reveals affordable housing plans

New homes and planning reforms have been pledged by the government in a bid to “build better homes where people want to live” and boost the UK’s economic recovery post-coronavirus. ...

Base rate held at 0.1% in August

The Bank of England left the base rate unchanged at 0.1% in August to support the economy’s recovery from the impact of coronavirus. ...

Shake-up of leasehold system proposed

Homeowners with leasehold properties could find it easier to buy the freehold or extend their leases, under changes to the leasehold system proposed by the Law Commission....

Stamp Duty Boost for Homebuyers

On 8th July Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced a major tax cut for home buyers, with a temporary waiver of Stamp Duty Land Tax for all properties valued up to £500,000. ...

Mortgage market update - Lenders re-introduce deals

Now that the property market has restarted again, lenders are busy working through the backlog of mortgage applications they put on hold when physical valuations had to cease during lockdown. ...

Property market re-opens for business

Thousands of homebuyers who had to put their moves on hold when the country went into lockdown at the end of March can now proceed with their plans ...

Mortgage market update - What happens next?

Recent weeks have proved a rollercoaster ride for the mortgage market, with several lenders withdrawing products and then expanding their ranges. But what next for the mortgage market? ...

SVR Watch - March 2020

The Bank of England reduced base rate by 0.50% to 0.25% on March 11th and then cut further to 0.10% on the 19th. Here's our rundown of how lenders are reacting to these cuts....

Home-movers advised to delay plans

Home-movers are being advised by the Government to put their plans on hold wherever possible whilst measures are in place to fight coronavirus. ...

Base rate cut to record low

The Bank of England cut the base rate again on Thursday to just 0.1%, its lowest ever level, in a bid to support the economy during the coronavirus crisis. ...

Budget 2020: How it affects the property market

Although much of this week’s Budget speech focused on measures to protect people and businesses from the economic impact of the coronavirus, there were several announcements on property. ...

Housing market update

A New Homes Ombudsman, Help to Buy numbers, leasehold reforms and house prices ...

Overpaying your mortgage

Paying off your mortgage early is a pretty appealing prospect for most people, so it’s little wonder that many of us plough any cash we don’t have an immediate need for back into our homes. ...

Should you say ‘I do’ to a joint mortgage?

With Valentine’s Day around the corner you might be starting to feel a bit romantic. Perhaps you’re thinking about moving in with your partner, or even popping the question? There’s a practical consideration you’ll want to think about before you make the big commitment of living together: How will the mortgage work?...

Why now is a good time for first time buyers

There are lots of reasons why now is a great time for first time buyers looking for a mortgage, including Stamp Duty exemption, low interest rates and Government schemes....

What are YOUR 2020 mortgage resolutions?

After all that festive spending, the New Year is the ideal time to review your finances and look at ways you might be able to save money in 2020. ...

2019 Mortgage market review of the year

Political and economic uncertainty may have dominated 2019, but homeowners and buyers have continued to benefit from rock-bottom mortgage rates. ...

New year, new financial you?

Is sorting out your finances one of your New Year’s resolutions? Whether you’re thinking about taking out a mortgage or if you already have one, it will probably be your biggest monthly outgoing, so should be a priority on your resolution list. Here are a few ideas to help you get going...

Shared ownership boost for lower earners

Thousands of lower earners will be given the opportunity to get onto the property ladder under plans for a new model of shared ownership announced by the Government. ...

Is your self-employed paperwork up to date?

There are nearly 5m self-employed workers in the UK but getting a mortgage if you work for yourself can be tricky if you don’t have the right paperwork in place. ...

Top first-time buyer misconceptions revealed

More than half of first-time buyers (57%) believe they’d be able to borrow up to 10 times’ their income when they take out a mortgage, according to new research. ...

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. ...

Number of Help to Buy loans up by 9%

The number of homes purchased using Help to Buy increased by 9% in the year to the end of March 2019, with 52,404 properties bought using the scheme over this period. ...

Are you improving rather than moving?

May saw a sharp increase in the number of people remortgaging and borrowing extra funds, suggesting that many are choosing to improve their homes rather than move. ...

Can you get a mortgage if you work for yourself?

Despite recent reports that self-employed people often believe they’d struggle to get a mortgage, being your own boss won’t necessarily make it harder to get on the property ladder. ...

Leaseholds axed for all new houses

All new build homes should be sold on a freehold basis in future, in a bid to tackle unfair and exploitative leasehold practices, the government announced in recent weeks. ...

Longer term mortgages on the rise

More than 28,000 mortgages running for 35 years or more were approved in 2017, according to data from the Financial Conduct Authority, with a growing number of lenders now offering terms of up to 40 years. ...

First-time buyers bypass flats

The average price of a flat in England has fallen by 2.1% over the year to an average of £220,146, according to the UK House Price Index for April, whereas all other types of property have increased in value. ...

IKEA to build low cost homes

Fancy a flat-pack home? Up to 162 new factory-built homes could soon be constructed in Worthing if a deal between the council and an affordable housing developer co-owned by IKEA goes ahead. ...

Why you might be turned down for a mortgage (and what you can do about it)

Most mortgage applications go without a hitch, but there are times when applications are refused, leaving buyers or homeowners wondering which way to turn. The good news is that once you know the reasons why a mortgage might be declined you can work on boosting your chances of being accepted. ...

New mortgages for public sector heroes

NHS staff, police officers, firefighters and teachers are among those who’ll be eligible to apply for a new ‘Hero Mortgage’ from specialist lender Kensington. ...

First-time buyer numbers continue to rise

The number of first-time buyers getting onto the property ladder is on the up, helped by low mortgage rates which make owning a home more affordable. ...

House of Lords calls for stamp duty review

Steep stamp duty costs are encouraging homeowners to improve rather than move, potentially reducing the number of smaller homes available to first-time buyers, a House of Lords report warns. ...

What the papers said about 40-year terms and Buy-to-Let rates

The financial press took a look at the pros and cons of longer mortgage terms this weekend, following research produced by Santander that suggested almost half of buyers would consider taking a mortgage over a period of 40 years. ...

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. ...

25-year mortgages no longer the standard

Lenders are increasingly offering mortgages with terms of up to 40 years, helping homebuyers on tighter budgets to get onto the property ladder. ...

House price growth remains sluggish in March

UK house prices edged higher in March, according to Nationwide, rising by a modest 0.2% during the month as ongoing Brexit uncertainty continues to take its toll. ...

Are banks really offering 100% mortgages?

100% mortgages have hit the headlines recently with the launch of Lloyds Bank’s new ‘Lend a Hand’ scheme, but can homebuyers really purchase a property with no deposit? ...

First-time buyer numbers jump

Growing numbers of first-time buyers are getting onto the property ladder, new figures show, helped by low mortgage rates and government schemes such as Help to Buy. ...

First-time buyers look to parents for help

One in five (22%) first-time buyers is hoping their parents will cough up more than half the funds they need to get onto the property ladder, according to recent research. ...

Beyond the Bank of Mum and Dad

Thousands of first-time buyers every year manage to get onto the property ladder with help from their parents, but not everyone is lucky enough to have financial support from family. ...

New ‘Help to Own’ scheme proposed

Landlords should be incentivised to sell to tenants at a discount under a new scheme proposed by conservative think-tank the Centre for Policy Studies. ...

What will the Budget mean for the property market?

The Chancellor Philip Hammond will unveil his Autumn Budget on October 29th, with many speculating that he could announce a range of measures affecting the property market. ...

What does the future hold for Help to Buy?

Lenders are urging the government to clarify the future of the Help to Buy scheme, warning that major changes could risk “significant market disruption.” ...

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