Remortgagors do not fear a rate rise

Christina Hoghton
Written By:
Christina Hoghton

Borrowers are still switching mortgages in their droves, but not because they are worried about a rate rise

Remortgagors are more sceptical of a rate rise than a year ago, with most convinced that rates won’t rise any time soon, according to research from LMS.

It said that just one in five (22%) now believe interest rates will rise compared to almost a third in January 2015 (30%). The possibility of a Brexit in 2016 has delayed the likelihood of a rate rise, along with global economic uncertainty.

But it isn’t stopping them from switching deals and borrowers are continuing to capitalise on current record low rates: two-thirds who remortgaged did so for this reason.

More than a third (36%) who remortgaged were able to reduce their payments by up to £500, while 3% chopped their monthly mortgage bill by more than £500.

Almost a third (29%) of remortgagors were able to increase the size of their loan, of which 72% increased the size by more than £10,000.

Monthly gross remortgage lending rose to a seven-year high of £6.2bn in January 2016, a rise of 49% from £4.2bn in December 2015, said the LMS research.

Andy Knee, chief executive of LMS, said: “With the looming possibility of a Brexit, and in the midst of global uncertainty and shaky markets, we’re seeing indications from the Bank of England of a base rate rise being pushed back further. Some have predicted a rise to be delayed until as far as 2019.

“However, borrowers appear to be wiser, and are still remortgaging to reduce costs rather than becoming complacent. With the cost of a fixed-rate mortgage at historic lows, plummeting swap rates and so many great deals on the market, it’s never been a better time to lock into low interest rates.”