13 February 2018

Press Coverage

New investment in buy-to-let has fallen by £20bn in two years as the combination of tighter tax and mortgage rules takes its toll on landlords. With lenders now expecting the entire portfolio of a landlord to satisfy their criteria, there will be a good deal of paperwork for those with very large property holdings and a greater chance of rejection. Mark Harris of SPF Private Clients, said: ‘What we will begin to see is landlords go for longer fixed-rate mortgages and buying in areas where they will get a very high yield. So they will look less in places like London where prices are higher and focus more on high-yielding areas, such as the north-east.’ The Daily Telegraph, 8 February 2018

Growing numbers of homeowners are set to lose their homes if they don’t take action to repay their debts, according to the Financial Conduct Authority. However, Mark Harris of SPF Private Clients, said: ‘There is a place for interest-only mortgages but anyone with one needs to regularly check their repayment strategy to ensure it is on track to clear the capital at the end of the term. If it isn’t, there is an argument for not throwing good money after bad. In other words, if an endowment has failed to deliver, rather than ploughing more money into it, consider other options such as switching part of the mortgage onto repayment (if you can’t afford to switch the full amount over) or investing in ISAs.’ The Independent, 1 February 2018

The self-employed, classed as ‘complex’ cases, can struggle to get a mortgage. ‘Self-employed borrowers can have an issue when it comes to getting a mortgage, particularly if you are new to self-employment,’ says Mark Harris of SPF Private Clients. He says Precise Mortgages, Kensington Mortgages and regional building societies offer the best options. The Sunday Times, 28 January 2018

Mortgage borrowers are benefiting from intense competition among high-street lenders. Mark Harris of mortgage broker SPF Private Clients, said that going into 2018 competition between mortgage lenders remained strong, with a number of banks and building societies including Barclays, Metro Bank and Newcastle building society reducing their fixed-rate mortgages. The Guardian, 11 January 2018

Lenders are offering some January deals to entice borrowers. Mark Harris of SPF Private Clients, says: ‘Many lenders are having their own January sales to drum up business. But while lower rates are tempting, you should not be swayed by these discounts. You need to work out the actual cost of the mortgage – including rate and fees – and then compare it with what else is on the market.’  The Mail on Sunday, 21 January 2018

Santander has introduced a variable follow-on rate (to which your mortgage defaults when any fixed-term deals end) at 3.25 per cent above the Bank of England base rate for anyone taking out a loan from Tuesday, and others may follow suit. Mark Harris of SPF Private Clients, says: ‘This is great news because the follow-on rate is one of the most competitive in the market. However, it is a shame that Santander is not moving all of its customers over to it automatically.’ The Times, 20 January 2018

Buying a wreck offers the chance to create something unique and entirely to your own taste. But think carefully about how you will finance it first. ‘It doesn’t matter if you’re a novice or experienced at renovation – lenders look for at least a 25 or 30 per cent deposit, and may require evidence of money to cover work that needs doing,’ says Mark Harris of SPF Private Clients. The Daily Mail, 18 January 2018

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