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Your rate could double overnight if you fixed your mortgage two years ago

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Written by: Max Liu
24/04/2019
Those on two-year fixed rates due to end soon will automatically move onto their lender's higher standard variable rate, unless they switch
Your rate could double overnight if you fixed your mortgage two years ago

Motivation for existing borrowers to remortgage from a lender’s standard variable rate (SVR) is increasing and expected to peak in October 2019.

Analysis by financial data firm Moneyfacts shows borrowers who opted for a two-year fixed rate in May 2017 could see their interest rate more than double overnight if they move onto their lender’s SVR rather than switch to a better deal.

The average two-year fixed rate in May 2017 was 2.30% while the average SVR today is 4.89%.

Those who locked into a two-year fix in October 2017, when average rates hit a record low of 2.20%, could see their interest payments soar even further if the average SVR remains constant at 4.89%, and they don’t switch.

Providers to target remortgage customers?

Moneyfacts spokesperson Darren Cook said: “Over the next six months, it is likely that many mortgage borrowers who secured a two-year mortgage deal two years ago may see their record low interest rate expiring and will have no intention to revert to a rate that could see their interest rate double overnight.

“For instance, a borrower on a repayment mortgage of £250,000 who locked into the average two-year fixed rate of 2.20 per cent in October 2017, if then transferred onto the predicted average lender’s SVR of 4.89 per cent in October 2019, will see their mortgage repayments increase by £4,336.20 per year with a rate increase of 2.69 per cent.

“This significant increase in motivation for borrowers to switch mortgage deals, and the subsequent potential increase in remortgage business as a result, may push some mortgage lenders to marginally cut rates over the next few months to maintain a competitive edge.

“The average two-year fixed rate has already fallen this month. However, this fall could be attributed to rate cuts at higher risk loan-to-value (LTV) tiers to attract first-time buyer business. It will therefore be interesting to see if the average rate falls further still as providers potentially target remortgage customers – and therefore lower LTV tiers – as we approach October.”

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