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Archive for February, 2009

Banking Minister slams ‘foolish’ mortgages

Thursday, February 26th, 2009

Lord Myners, the Banking Minister, has called lenders offering 100% mortgages ‘foolish’.

This comes after Prime Minister Gordon Brown called for ‘prudent and careful’ mortgage deals in the wake of the credit crunch.

The Financial Services Authority is to investigate controls over 100%+ mortgages, whilst the Conservatives claim that Mr Brown’s regulatory system whilst Chancellor allowed 125% mortgages to happen.

40,000 repossessions in 2008

Monday, February 23rd, 2009

The Council of Mortgage Lenders have announced last year’s repossession figures.

There were 40,000 repossessions in 2008, which represents a 54% increase on 2007’s levels.

The rise is blamed on the lack of affordable mortgage deals, plus rising costs and growing unemployment.

Consumer choice shrinks as mortgage deals vanish

Tuesday, February 17th, 2009

The number of mortgage deals available to consumers has reduced to only 0.1% of its pre-credit crunch level.

In July 2007, there were 15,599 different mortgage deals available across the market, but since the financial crisis struck, that number has reduced to just 1,542.

The average size of deposits has also shot up to around 22% on average, meaning that for customers looking for a mortgage with an LTV of 10%, the choice is limited to just 113 mortgages.

First time buyers struggle to find mortgage deals

Tuesday, February 17th, 2009

New figures from the Intermediary Mortgage Lenders Association reveal today the difficulty first time buyers face in securing a mortgage.

Though mortgage rates are relatively low, almost two thirds of first time buyers are completely unable to get a mortgage deal through their broker due to the high deposits required.

58% of first time house buyers were unable to find a mortgage in Q4 of last year.

Average deposits for mortgages are at their highest for 34 years, at approximately 22%.

Bankers apologies after Treasury pressure

Friday, February 13th, 2009

Ex-chief executives of high street banks HBOS and RBS were forced to give a grovelling apology by Treasury Select Committee yesterday.

HBOS’ Lord Stevenson and Andy Hornby and Tom McKillop and Sir Fred Goodwin of RBS, squirmed as the committee grilled them for several hours over bonus culture, bad investments and how the credit criris was allowed to happen.

The four bankers were told they held a significant proportion of the blame for the financial crisis, which has left many consumers desperately trying to find affordable mortgage deals.

Mortgage prices fall as lenders pass on rates

Friday, February 13th, 2009

The most recent base rate cut appears to have had some effect.

The Financial Times reports that lenders are passing on rate cuts to borrowers, and fixed rate mortgage deals are falling in price.

There are conditions to these cheaper deals; consumers are advise to watch out for the conditions of the mortgages later on.

Some lenders, for example, offer borrowers a cheap fixed rate for only one year, after which they are moved to a tracker rate with a high premium over the base rate.

Bank of England to make “pointless” cut

Monday, February 9th, 2009

With mortgage deals remaining unobtainable for many borrowers, the Bank of England is expected to cut the base rate again today.

The further 0.5% cut will bring the base rate down to just 1%.

The cut, however, has been dubbed “pointless” by economists, who claim that the saving will not be passed on to borrowers to make mortgages more affordable.

Homeowners waiting for lower fixed rate mortgage deals

Wednesday, February 4th, 2009

A new survey claims that most homeowners are ‘holding out’ for fixed rate mortgages of under 4%.

The poll, conducted by, said that the average borrower was looking for a mortgage rate of 3.86%, whilst a third of borrowers wanted a mortgage deal of lower than 3%.

The survey concluded that UK homeowners are waiting longer than usual to remortgage, in case of further market changes.