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Brexit – collapsed BTL deals, a remortgage rush and the money markets

by: Victoria Hartley and Hannah Uttley
  • 27/06/2016
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Brexit – collapsed BTL deals, a remortgage rush and the money markets
The housing and mortgage advice industries continue to calm clients and clarify the mortgage funding position since the shock result to leave the European Union on Friday.

Matt Sutton, managing director, at mortgage and equity release advice firm Emerald Finance in Worthing, West Sussex, said his brokers lost four buy-to-let deals on the day of the result as clients pulled out.

“I think they’ll still buy at some point, but it feels like they just wanted to catch their breath,” he said.

Robin Purdie, director of Mov8 Financial, based in Edinburgh, said: “We’ve not had any buyers pull out thus far, there have been five or six clients panic including existing homeowners worrying about what’s going to happen to interest rates – all the questions that I can’t answer.”

Purdie said he’d like to think Scotland won’t be hit too hard but said a lot rests with the mortgage lenders.

“I’m really hopeful that there won’t be too much panic by lenders around 95% LTV lending and that house prices remain stable because we don’t want to see existing homeowners with these deals go into negative equity.”

Emerald Finance is planning a remortgaging multi-media marketing campaign which began on the weekend through social media, to encourage customers to lock in historically low rates, especially from Standard Variable Rates.

On Friday, Fleet repriced its products and Kensington withdrew a 90% LTV product.

Ian Balfour, CEO at Solent Mortgage Services, said some lenders immediately re-priced but others, like Family Building Society reduced rates this morning on a raft of two-, three and five-year fixed rate products.

“It seems it’s not about interest rates on individual products, it’s about the confidence of funders on whether to carry on doing business in the UK. However, I’ve been quite pleased with the market reaction on swap rates this morning,” he added.

Stephen Smith, director, Legal & General Housing Partnerships, said the mortgage club was proactively contacting lender partners last week.

“It seems that at present, particularly since the calming statement by the Governor of the Bank of England, that the swap markets have not reacted badly, so there does not seem to be an immediate risk of wholesale withdrawal and repricing of fixed rate deals. However, all the lenders we spoke to were keeping this under very active review, and there may be changes made to product ranges in the light of funding market changes over coming days or weeks.

“The next few weeks, or possibly months, will be a period of great uncertainty, politically and economically, in all markets, not just the housing and mortgage markets, and it is not possible, at this stage, to give clear guidance to borrowers or advisers on what may change,” he added.

Smith said the Club planned to give members a market view but was happy to respond to individual queries on product availability.

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