Has Coronavirus changed mortgages long term?

Coronavirus has changed many things in our lives over the last 18 months or so. Some good things – like not having people in your personal space in queues! But obviously mostly negative things, none of our lives have been the same. But as the spring weather shows signs of arriving, so does a path out of all the restrictions and back to normal life. What better time to reflect on what this has done to mortgages and what has been temporary but also, what might be here to stay.

Let’s go back to early 2020 when things started to change, we all got told no stay at home, work from home, do not go out. People were furloughed, a word none of us really knew existed until now. But we are certainly familiar with it these days. Lenders started using furlough income to get mortgages, they needed to as so many people were being furloughed. It actually (for us at least), didn’t impact lending too much really with the odd exception but then time progressed and later in the year we would see lenders stop using furlough income. The same is true now, if you are furloughed there are not really any options for you until you can show a normal payslip again now.

Some other things changed with income as well, some lenders stopped using bonus, overtime and commission. This really had an effect for some whose jobs are heavily commission-based or for those who do lots of overtime. Thankfully though we are seeing this return to normal now with most mainstream lenders back to where we were before, you can again now use your extra income to support your application.

Arguably the biggest change though was to deposits. We saw lender after lender withdraw from lending at 90% loan to value (10% deposit). All that is except one! HSBC stayed true to us all and for that we thank them really, as there were cases that had to be done and they got all the business! A risky strategy really considering all the others retreated. One issue though, was they only allocated a certain amount of money for these mortgages each day and when it was gone it was gone. This was usually by about 1 minute past 8 in the morning so it was nowhere near enough to keep the country going. It’s a shame on reflection the other lenders withdrew, we can see now that house prices did not crash and at the time of writing this, in my mind at least, they show no signs of doing so either.

Much as all lenders withdrew from 90% lending, the rates for 85% lending shot up like a race to have the highest. At least 1% higher than before we knew what Coronavirus was and social distancing was a thing. The reality now is that they haven’t gone down either (yet?) I say that cautiously because I don’t know any better than you whether they will or not. Logic seems to suggest to me, that when we are truly back to normal, lenders will be racing to be the cheapest again. I suspect this is why we are seeing more shorter term fixed rates being taken with smaller deposits instead of the longer term trends we have seen in the last few years, in the hope of a lower rate at the end of your first fixed period. Who knows if that is right but it sounds plausible doesn’t it?

The good news for now though is that 90% is back! And not just with a few here and there like it was but properly back, pretty much every High Street lender has them again now, if you are prepared to pay for it that is. A 10% deposit will cost you a lot more per month than it would have once but for most that doesn’t out-weigh the benefit of buying, instead of renting or getting on the property ladder and nor should it!

We have seen a change too with the evidence we need for a mortgage application, an extra pay slips here, couple more bank statements there. It is the self employed that have been affected the most here, usually being asked for 3 months business bank statements as well as personal ones. Thinking about that though, it seems sensible doesn’t it when you are using business profit figures that could be a year or more old to want to see that you are still actively trading? I would say so and whilst it would be great to lose some of this extra paperwork it hasn’t caused too many issues. I think I need to mention another lender here, when so many stopped or restricted self-employed lending or put so many hoops to jump through even the most slender of gymnasts would struggle, there was Santander. Getting progressively more and more behind schedule on the actual processing but nevertheless still lending and still looking after the self-employed. They did not cope so well with ‘work from home where you can’ but surely did stick at it!

One good thing to come from all this was lenders and surveyors joining the modern era and where possible doing contactless surveys for mortgages. Where the property allows and the mortgage risk to the lender is ok, a surveyor would not have needed to enter a house in an effort to limit contact. Not only did this help reduce the spread it also helped speed things along. No longer do we wait 2 weeks for a physical viewing, they hop on Google street view and maybe drive by and job done!

Bar a few tweaks to some affordability calculators just reining in the maximum you can borrow ever so slightly I think that’s it really, we are pretty much back to a position where most cases again are going to be ok. Which is surely good news and with house prices remaining strong, new houses coming to the market and plenty of buyers around we are still set to have a wonderful 2021, or at least the last two thirds of it!

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An extra gift in your Christmas shopping could mean the world to a child or young person this year.

We know that many more people will find this Christmas harder financially so more children could go without.

We've been in touch with the Salvation Army to collect gifts on their behalf. We will then drop them off to the Banbury centre who will distribute them locally this Christmas.

Unwrapped gifts must be with us by Friday 10th December. They are in particular need of gifts suitable for 16-18 year olds, things like; games, gloves, socks, toiletries, mugs, bags, stationary, headphones etc.

THANK YOU to everyone who has dropped something in so far - you're amazing!
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Black glasses for Black Friday ⚫️🤓

So, #blackfriday

Love it or hate it?

Personally I can't stand it. It seems to me it brings out the worst in some people, all trying to get something bigger or better. I remember the scenes on the first black Friday a few years ago. People literally hurting each other to get to a product off the shelves.

I wonder if they still have those items now?

It is my belief that we should always be savvy about getting the very best out of our money, every day of the year.

When remortgaging you might ask yourself, is it worth the hassle of moving lenders?

The answer is YES.

In fact, a saving of just 0.5% on a mortgage of £250,000 would be around £62 per month difference. That is about £3720 over a 5 year fixed term!* A substantial amount that you could and would probably want to put to better use.

I believe this to be a better way of getting good value for money and thinking about your future. Rather than buying something on a whim just because it's Black Friday.

So today, on Black Friday, check when your mortgage rate comes to an end and get in touch to see if I could find you a better fit.

*Figures based on a mortgage of £250,000 over 25 years at 1.5% verses 2% to the nearest whole pound.

**Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.
Our typical fee for arranging a mortgage is £500 but this may vary on the complexity of your individual case.
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If you're thinking of a move next year, any time next year, just be warned it could be a busy one.

Many moves and plans have been put on hold since the pandemic started. I predict that next year is going to be a recovery year. Recovery for our families, our plans and our searches for the next perfect home.

If this is you, I urge you to put in some of the background work now so that when you think you're ready, you're already on the right track. One step ahead.

One of the very first things you can do is get an up to date valuation of your home. If you're local to north Oxfordshire, my agency Maxwells Estate Agent can help you with this - at your pace.

If you're not local, I can help you with a remote valuation to get you started and can recommend estate agents best suited to you and your home.

Get in touch 01295 981300

**Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.
Our typical fee for arranging a mortgage is £500 but this may vary on the complexity of your individual case.
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Next year is going to be a BIG year.

I'm actually obsessed with looking forward. So much so, Julie often tells me that I need to slow down and take in what's going on right now and be more present.

Which is why we make such a good team I guess. Her yogi outlook on life and my dreamer head.

But my brain isn't wired that way - I'm always planning, considering, thinking about what the next challenge is going to be.

I've got so much planned for my businesses (stay tuned) and for my family (that might actually be more Julie's doing) in 2022.

Next year will be a big year for many of my clients too as many of them are going to come to the end of their fixed rate. There will be more conversations about home improvements, projects, moving plans and more. I can't wait to start helping them on putting their plans into action.

Check if your mortgage rate is coming to an end next year. If it is, start thinking about what your plans are. Is it to pay off a lump sum, is it to get working on that extension or finally convert the loft into a home office?

Whatever your plans, consider how you might make them a reality.

Take a look at my blog for more on remortgaging next year - link in the bio.

**Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.
Our typical fee for arranging a mortgage is £500 but this may vary on the complexity of your individual case.
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Refer a friend to us at Vantage Mortgages and receive a £50 Amazon voucher - that would be nice for some Christmas shopping right?! 🛍 📦
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🎅 There is no limit to how many people you refer - £50 for each referral.
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🎅 You'll receive your voucher when your friend submits their mortgage application.
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Do you know someone who would benefit from our expertise? Tag them!
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*Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage. Our typical fee for arranging a mortgage is £500.
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Some children will struggle to be given much at all this Christmas.
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We are opening up our office as a drop off point for Christmas gifts for children and young people. They will then be taken to the salvation army for distribution.
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So whilst you're out and about shopping, if you felt you could buy an extra gift for a child, we know it would be so very much appreciated.
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The #salvationarmy have told us it's gifts for both boys and girls aged 16-18 that they tend to struggle for. We've got started with some toiletries gift sets.
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We know that these are incredibly difficult times for some of us financially right now so whatever you can afford will be absolutely amazing.
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If you'd like to drop a gift to us to pass on, however big or small, please get it to our office, 48 High Street Banbury BEFORE 10th December and make sure it is unwrapped. And we'll be delighted to pass it on for you.
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#helpatchristmas #salvationarmyuk #christmascharity
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We are not a bank or building society.

We are family owned and independent mortgage and protection advisers.

And we THRIVE on our clients spreading the word about our expertise and service.

We have a little favour to ask...

Consider the following:

When you decide to use a service for a big life decision (an estate agent, a mortgage adviser, health care) how do you make your decision?

It's probably no surprise that most people make their choice based on other people's experience. This could be a conversation in person with a friend or family member, a recommendation from a colleague or online reviews.

Hearing positive comments and feedback from others helps us to feel secure in our decision making, this is particularly important when deciding who to use when arranging your mortgage. For a lot of us, this will be one of the largest financial commitments you will ever make.

We know it seems everyone is after a review for something these days but for a service like ours, your words could be the beginning of another client's journey with us.

(We can't advertise on TV like national companies. I'm not sure we'd want to!)

It's now easier than ever for you to leave us a review, taking just minutes to do. Please consider telling others about your experience with us as we strive to work hard for our clients and aim to get the very best result possible for them.

Here's the link: https://review.vantage-mortgages.co.uk

And keep your eyes peeled for how we will reward our clients who spread the love... 💗 (details are coming soon)

#mortgagebroker #mortgagehelpers #localbusinessuk

Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.
Our typical fee for arranging a mortgage is £500 but this may vary on the complexity of your individual case.
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So you may be thinking, doesn’t it cost a lot to change mortgage lenders?

Absolutely not! In fact most of the time for a simple swap it doesn’t cost anything at all. Most lenders will provide a free solicitor to handle the change over and they will usually cover the cost of the valuation too.

This is the point when we will find out about your situation, your income, outgoings and any other considerations that may need to be taken into account, like your credit history before we give advice on what to do next.

See more about this in my newest blog - link in the bio.

#remortgage #mortgagetips #mortgagehelpers #proudtobeprimis #mortgagelender #mortgagebrokers #oxfordshire

**Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.
Our typical fee for arranging a mortgage is £500 but this may vary on the complexity of your individual case.
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Say cheese 🧀 😄 Our faces are aching but what a lovely morning having some updated team photos taken. @katkaholliday made everyone feel at ease - can't wait to see the pics!
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Dotty was a dream to photograph today 😍😍 I think we may have to do a Dotty calendar for Christmas or something 🤔😀
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#mortgagehelp #mortgagehelpers #remortgage #officedogsofinstagram #officephotos #teampics #saycheese📸
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Can Dotty get some love for wearing her poppy with pride today?
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#poppywithpride #lestweforget🌹 #officedogsofinstagram
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