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Mortgage product availability passes record 21,000 – Twenty7tec

  • 02/04/2024
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Mortgage product availability passes record 21,000 – Twenty7tec
Some 21,054 mortgage products were available on the market in March, a new record for the sector, figures from a sourcing platform suggested.

The Twenty7tec monthly mortgage market report showed there were 1,420 more options on the market than in February, and this was also 7.2% higher than the same month last year. 

The previous record was seen in 2020, just before the Covid-19 pandemic impacted the market. 

Some 1.9 million searches were conducted on the Twenty7tec platform, which was a 12% fall on the previous month. 

The number of searches for purchase products fell by 4.5% from just over one million in February to 945,194 in March. Remortgage searches also dropped from 1.1 million to 934,685.

Respectively, these represented declines of 8.1% and 15.61% compared to February – the busiest month on record – and 4.98% and 3.75% annually. 

Nathan Reilly, director of customer relationships and operations at Twenty7tec, said: “March 2024 was down on the prior month, and down on January 2024 too, despite it being a longer working month.” 

Purchase searches accounted for 50.28% of queries in March, while remortgages made up 49.72%. Compared to the previous month, this was an improvement for purchase activity, which accounted for 48.38% of searches in February. 

James Tucker (pictured), CEO of Twenty7tec, said it was the first time in six months that purchase search volumes were higher than remortgages. 

“Let’s hope that, as the clocks go forward, so will market momentum,” he added. 

First-time buyers made up 15.6% of searches, the lowest level in four years. However, it was relatively flat on the 15.64% share recorded in February.

Twenty7tec’s data showed potential homeowners were enquiring about products at an average loan to value (LTV) of 81%, for an average loan of £218,273. The average property value for a first-time buyer home was £286,046. 

Buy-to-let (BTL) mortgage searches dropped by 9.65% to 313,371, while the average loan required came to £189,132. 


Shift to two-year fixed mortgages 

Some 51.51% of fixed product searches in March were for a two-year fixed deal, compared to 41.3% during the same month last year. Twenty7tec said this was the highest proportion since it began reporting.

Tucker said this was a sign that borrowers had priced changes into the market. 

Three-to-five-year fixed mortgages made up 28.41% of searches during the month, down from 34.06% the year before. Meanwhile, five- and 10-year fixed searches accounted for 20.08% of queries, down from 24.68%. 


A slower mortgage market 

Reilly added: “March 2024 saw a slowing of the market, as the combination of an unusually early Easter and the Bank of England’s decision to maintain interest rates saw a nudge downwards in mortgage searches. The figures are, of course, high when viewed in the long term, but will feel slower to a market that has been running hot since Boxing Day 2023. 

“One new record of note is that more mortgage products are available now than ever before. At month-end, total product availability stood 7.2% higher than the prior month, the first time we have seen over 21,000 products on the market. The previous record was set just a few days before the pandemic affected the UK market in March 2020. 

“Finally, consumers have built in an expectation of change in rates, as the majority of fixed mortgage searches are now for two years or less.” 

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