Lenders have been happy to hand out mortgage money to cash-rich homeowners in the pandemic, but not to first-time buyers with small deposits and the self-employed.
Interest rates levied on mortgages with a 5pc deposit are now below 4 per cent, with the lowest in June at 3.39 per cent for a two year fix. At the very beginning of the virus crisis, the Bank of England dropped the base interest rate to a record low of 0.1 per cent. And now, as lockdown eases, there's a chance the rate could be raised. Such a change would increase mortgage repayment bills for those on tracker deals.
Trussle's Mr Robinson says homeowners should also be wary of standard variable rates, adding: 'We've found that customers save £334 on average per month by remortgaging on to a fixed rate.
Homeowners in Scotland paint their front doors red when they have paid off their mortgage.
A mortgage rate of less than one per cent will heat up the home loans market today.
Nationwide Building Society is launching the 0.99 per cent deal for those able to pay a hefty 40 per cent deposit and a £1,499 fee. Nationwide is also cutting rates of selected mortgages by up to 0.20 per cent, including some for first time buyers.
Moneyfacts.co.uk said signs of competition are starting to show. The website's Racheal Springall called it a 'change for the better'.
A petition launched earlier this month for the stamp duty holiday to be triggered upon exchange of contracts, rather than completion, has attracted more than 10,000 signatories. The petition, which was started last month by an individual who is looking to take advantage of the existing stamp duty holiday, has proved popular with buyers and sellers, as well as agents, conveyancing solicitors, mortgage lenders and surveyors.
Chris Holland, who created the petition, told EYE: 'People are finding themselves becoming trapped in a scenario whereby house prices are much higher and at the same time they will now miss out on the stamp duty holiday. People are being punished financially from both sides, this from a policy that was designed to do the exact opposite. Exchanging contracts is exactly what it says. A contract, a legally binding agreement, to purchase a house often with an immediate 10% deposit being paid. So why shouldn't you benefit from the stamp duty holiday being triggered at that moment of exchanging contracts, rather than at the point of completion? This will allow in particular particularly new build buyers, with continuous building delays due to Covid-19, to benefit from this policy'.
Reaching 10,000 signatures means the government must now respond to Mr Holland's petition.
The chancellor Rishi Sunak previously bowed to pressure and eventually extended the stamp duty holiday beyond 31st March, amid concerns that thousands of buyers could fail to complete before the deadline.
Petitions posted on Westminster's official petition.parliament.uk site are considered for a debate in parliament if they accrue more than 100,000 signatures.
Property Industry EYE
House price inflation could hit ten per cent this summer, economists have predicted. It would mean buyers having to pay about £22,000 more on average than a year ago. Experts said even though this year's surprise boom was 'unsustainable' in the long term, prices were forecast to continue going up for the rest of the year - and to rise again in 2022 and 2023.
Robert Gardener, chief economist at Nationwide Building Society, said house price inflation was likely to move into double digits in the next couple of months, following a dip in values during the early months of the pandemic. He warned that the longer-term- outlook was difficult to predict. 'It will be a question of how resilient the labour market is,' he said. 'Will unemployment spike? If so, that could impact adversely on the housing market, slowing activity sharply. Or will any increase in unemployment be limited by a steep recovery in the economy? If so, that will augur well for house prices.'
Andrew Wishart, property economist at forecasters Capital Economics, predicted house price inflation would average three percent a year between now and the end of 2024, as long as interest rates remain low. He said: 'Without increases to interest rates, which are unlikely until 2025 at the earliest, we see no reason why the market should correct.'