Banks are reporting that the numbers of customers re-mortgaging their properties are at its highest ever. Most of these customers are seeking to take advantage of two important trends in the economy. The first is that lower interest rates and increased competition among banks and financial institutions are leading to better and better deals being available on the market in general. The second is that most borrowers’ financial situations have improved dramatically since they have first taken out their mortgage and therefore they are able to get far better terms and interest rates for themselves. For example, most people who take out a hundred percent mortgage will be able to switch it, within two years, to a ninety or ninety-five percent mortgage that offers significantly better terms.
For the last couple of years, interest rates in the economy in general have been at historically low levels. Even with recent rate increases, current rates are still far lower than they were when many mortgages still being paid were first taken out. This means that there are savings to be made by fixed rate mortgage holders who can pay off their old mortgage and replace it with a new one taking advantage of today’s lower rates. Even for people with variable mortgage rates, there are savings to be made as the formulas for calculating the payable rate may have become more generous in recent years.
This is especially true if you look at the increased competition at play in the mortgage market. The main banks have been joined by a plethora of competitors from Britain, the US and Europe, who are all seeking to carve for themselves a share of the market. They are now offering customers better deals and mortgages with more attractive and flexible terms than any lenders have been willing to do in the past. New products mean you can take advantage of discount periods, makeover or underpayments, offset your other savings against your mortgage or take out interest-only mortgages. Many people who took out mortgages in the past are deciding to switch to one of these new products.
Also, for many borrowers, as time passes, the value of their home has increased significantly and their income has also increased. This will make them eligible for mortgages that they may not have qualified for in the past. These mortgages will offer them lower rates and better terms and conditions and so will be persuading them to make the switch and opt to re-mortgage.