Mortgages  

Lender finds rise in remortgaging as price war intensifies

Lender finds rise in remortgaging as price war intensifies

Up to one in six (16 per cent) homeowners are considering remortgaging over the next six months as the ongoing mortgage price wars cut rates, according to the Nottingham Building Society.

Research conducted online by Consumer Intelligence at the start of April among a nationally representative sample of 1,115 adults showed that they are targeting average savings of £99 a month - equivalent to £1,188 a year.

The Nottingham’s research shows five-year fixes are the most popular choice for customers considering remortgaging – 27 per cent of potential remortgaging customers would choose a five-year fix, ahead of 21 per cent opting for a two-year fix.

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Around three-quarters of those considering remortgaging would choose a fixed-rate deal, while just 7 per cent of those surveyed would choose tracker rates, only 4 per cent considering discount deals and 7 per cent favouring a standard variable rate.

Nottingham’s findings follow Council of Mortgage Lenders figures in March which revealed that lending for remortgaging increased 15 per cent month-on-month, while others have forecasted a surge in remortgaging in response to recent rate cuts which have seen five-year fixes drop below 2 per cent.

HSBC launched a 60 per cent LTV five-year fix at 1.99 per cent, the lowest on record, according to Moneyfacts.

Prior to that, data published by sourcing firm Mortgage Brain showed that at 1 April, the lowest rate for a five-year fixed 60 per cent LTV saw a 19 per cent drop to 2.24 per cent and the lowest rate for a 90 per cent LTV fell 15 per cent to 3.59 per cent.

Ian Gibbons, senior mortgage broking manager at Nottingham Mortgage Services, said that the “mortgage price war” will be of interest to existing homeowners who are keen to take advantage of record low rates.

“Potentially savings are higher than the average £99 a month people are looking for. Someone with a £150,000 mortgage who moved from a deal at 4 per cent to one at 2 per cent could be around £3,000 a year better off.

However, he added that to secure the best remortgage deal it is important to look at more than the base rate.

Mr Gibbons said: “You need to search the whole market and to be aware of the product fees that may be charged; a great rate won’t save you much if you have to pay a high fee.”

The research also found that Londoners are the most likely to consider remortgaging, at 28 per cent, followed by those in Yorkshire and Humberside at 19 per cent, and people in the East Midlands with 18 per cent.

peter.walker@ft.com