Let’s not beat around the bush, it’s tough out there! We have seen numerous local and national retail outlets and banks recently confirm they are to reduce their store or branch numbers as the ‘online versus shop front’ takes further casualties.
In addition, the finance sector is also finding it tough. Despite already losing some lenders with funding issues, other lenders are delayed with processing mortgage cases. One we know is at least two full weeks behind and then a further week to produce the mortgage offer! Certainly something to check before you proceed with a lender, especially if you’re in a rush to buy that ‘dream home’.
On the plus side, it is encouraging lenders to become more innovative and think about more differentiating ways to attract new business.
Our friends at United Trust Bank have launched a very limited distribution remortgage range that allows each application to be assessed on its merits and does not aspire to the ‘one-size-fits’ all mentality. This includes:
– No requirement for a minimum credit score.
– No restriction on property construction types
– No loan to value restrictions on any flats
– No borrower legal representation required
– No penalties on five-year fixed rate products.
– Free valuation up to a property value of £250k.
Obviously, terms and conditions apply, but this shows that lenders are thinking about unique angles to assist clients, especially with regards to remortgages and speeding up the process.
With this in mind, I feel the need to reiterate that whatever is spent on credit cards has to repaid! If you are looking to review your mortgage in the next few months and have loaded the credit card balance up during the Easter holiday period, remember that lenders will use the balance and offset against your income, before working out what you can borrow. That includes interest free credit cards, loans, Car HP/PCP agreements and student loans. They are all taken in to account.
Finally, we have also seen a vast increase in customers looking to consolidate debt and add these amounts to their current mortgage. This can sometimes cause issues. If you consolidate unsecured finance into your mortgage, whilst your monthly payments may be lower, you may be paying more for your debt over a longer term. Always seek professional advice, read the small print and don’t rush in to things.