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Furlough-friendly mortgages top adviser searches

Furlough-friendly mortgages top adviser searches
 Credit: Ian Forsyth/Bloomberg

Mortgages for furloughed borrowers was the most common search term by brokers last month, according to Legal & General Mortgage Club.

Data from the mortgage club’s criteria search tool found searches for ‘furlough-friendly’ mortgages rose 230 per cent between December and January.

Clare Beardmore, head of mortgage transformation and operations at Legal & General Mortgage Club, said the demand for furlough-friendly products indicated borrowers’ need for advice.

Beardmore said: “[We’re] continuing to see strong demand among consumers for furlough friendly mortgage products.

“While this isn’t altogether surprising given the effects of lockdowns over the past year, it’s yet another sign that thousands more borrowers with complex circumstances will need the support of advisers to help them find suitable mortgage options in the months ahead.”

The mortgage club’s criteria search tool also recorded its highest ever volume of mortgage searches last month, according to Legal & General, with searches up by 69 per cent from December.

The majority of searches were for residential products, making up three-quarters (76 per cent) of the overall total, indicating strong demand from owner-occupiers.

Beardmore said: “Our latest data paints a promising picture for the mortgage market. Clearly, many people are continuing to press ahead with their homeownership ambitions and in many cases advisers are successfully matching them with the mortgage products they need to step onto and up the property ladder.”

Luke Spellman, owner of Spellman Financial Services, said he found January and February had been “busier than usual”, with applicants trying to beat the stamp duty holiday deadline.

Spellman added: “I’m also finding a large number of applicants that are on furlough.

“It’s increasingly difficult to meet these applicants’ affordability expectations when they have been furloughed, as many lenders won’t accept furlough income at all.”

Meanwhile Barry Ireland, financial adviser at The Finance Roome, said the firm had seen a “fairly hefty” increase in enquiries from customers whose income had been impacted by the pandemic.

Ireland added: “In terms of pandemic-related queries, self-employment continues to make up the highest volume of our queries.”

chloe.cheung@ft.com

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