Mortgages  

Skipton’s tweaked fixed rates looking good

Skipton Building Society has unveiled a revised range of two and five-year fixed rate residential mortgages at varying LTV levels.

Two-year fixes at 80 per cent LTV is now available at 1.95 per cent with a £995 product fee. The fee-free option is also available – albeit at a higher rate of interest of 2.25 per cent. At 85 per cent LTV, the rate is 2.25 per cent with a £995 product fee and 2.60 per cent fee-free.

Meanwhile, five-year fixes at 60 per cent LTV are priced at 2.44 per cent, with a £995 product fee and 2.58 per cent without a fee.

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At 85 per cent LTV the rate applicable is 3.23 per cent with product fee of £995 and 3.09 per cent with a £1,995 product fee. The fee-free option is available at 3.36 per cent.

Other reductions include a five-year fix at 3.95 per cent at 90 per cent LTV fee-free.

What is more, the revised remortgage range includes a two-year fix at 1.95 per cent at 60 per cent LTV fee-free, and a five-year fix at 2.72 per cent to 70 per cent LTV, also fee-free.

Free standard legals and valuations are available for all remortgages and overpayments of up to 10 per cent a year are allowed without penalty.

REACTIONS

Provider view

Kris Brewster, head of products at Skipton, said: “We’re pleased to be able to lower rates across a range of short-term and longer-term fixed rate mortgages as well as include free valuations on all our new purchase products. We continue to offer fee and rate options to suit a number of different borrower requirements.

“Our mortgage products continue to have an emphasis on offering wide choice and good value, along with our commitment to doing everything to help borrowers.”

Adviser view

Clive Balchin, managing director at Lancashire-based James Trickett & Sons, said: “I think the range of two- and five-year fixes is extremely competitive. There is not much difference between the product with a fee and the fee-free alternative, which is a good thing.

“Skipton has a good underwriting process too. It takes a more human approach – making decisions on a case-by-case basis. Some clients are driven by rates while others are driven by service. I think the service lenders provide to customers will become even more important.”

Charges

Charges range from £0 to £1,995.

Verdict

The Council of Mortgage Lenders estimates that gross mortgage lending reached £22bn in July – 14 per cent higher than July last year (£19.4bn), and the highest monthly figure since gross lending reached £23.6bn in July 2008.

As the summer months draw to a close, competition in the mortgage marketplace shows no sign of dwindling. Here, although the products in the revised range are not market leading, they are competitive. Perhaps other providers will follow Skipton as they gear up to the pending increase in base rates.

Choice is good. Those who are seeking a high value mortgage are most likely to be better paying a premium for the loan for the sake of a lower rate of interest, while customers seeking a small loan are likely to benefit from a lower or no product fee, at the cost of a higher rate of interest.