Problems moving up the property ladder

The limited edition mortgage products available for ‘seven day only’ are back!

Santander, or Abbey for Intermediaries as we still know them in the broker world, have launched a number of market leading fixed rates for a limited period.

In order to bolster books and attract a wealth of new customers, these two year fixed rates are sub 2% with minimal fees and free valuation.

Although requiring a hefty deposit at 40%, they’re great products and only available for 7 day slots.

Maybe we’ll see a few others join in these quick fire offerings before the end of the financial year...

But despite the newly attractive rates, it is still tough out there.

Lloyds TSB carried out a survey of over 500 first time sellers and 65% of these suggested that raising a deposit was their biggest obstacle.

Over 22% say it’s now harder to move up the ladder than it was to get on it!

With this in mind, I turn to one of this month’s largest issues - the Bank of Ireland rate hike.

Around 13,500 existing customers will have their rates increased over the coming months.

For those with Buy to Let mortgages, rates will rise from 1.75% above Bank Base Rate (BBR) to 4.49% above BBR in May!

Those with residential Bank of Ireland mortgages will see rates increase to 3.99% plus BBR from October.

The Bank says the changes reflect the significant increase in the cost of funding these mortgages and refers to a “special condition” in its mortgage contract that permits the hike.

This has obviously angered a lot of customers, including many mortgage professionals who had mortgages from this lender.

Even more so that Bank of Ireland also fund the mortgages offered by the Post Office, who, incidentally are currently offering near market leading competitive fixed rates to new customers!

Obviously I have to be careful in what I say here, but the mortgage profession is strictly guided and assessed by a policy called ‘Treating Customers Fairly’.

Enough said I think!

Dale Jannels - AToM director