Daily Telegraph seeking mortgage experts

ended 07. June 2021

Data out from Moneyfacts this morning showed the number of mortgage products now available on the market has rebounded to pre-pandemic levels.

But it also showed the average shelf life of a mortgage deal had dropped, giving prospective borrowers just 28 days to secure their chosen deal.

A journalist at the Daily Telegraph is writing a piece on this latter issue, and wants to know whether it might cause problems given the frenzied market and delays linked to conveyancing, bidding wars, gazumping, etc. 

Deadline is ultra-tight so please be short and punchy in your alert_responses: 1-2 sentences max will do. 

11 responses from the Newspage community

"The endless tinkering of lenders with their product suites, whether that's removing, improving or adding new products, has created a highly complex lending environment. Things can then get even more complex with regular criteria and policy changes, especially if you're a 'rate shopper'. "This past 12 months have shown just how useful and crucial it is to speak to a good quality mortgage broker rather than going it alone, as for many people in the current climate, without wanting to appear rude, a little knowledge can be a dangerous thing."
"Once the mortgage application has been submitted, the rate is secured. To take advantage of the best rate, borrowers need to move quickly as the rates can be pulled at short notice."
"With over 300 mortgage products returning to the market since May, and lenders competing feverishly on rates, it's a great opportunity for borrowers to review their circumstances and lock into a competitive mortgage deal. "Lenders will constantly be chopping and changing rates for the foreseeable future to hit lending targets, which will benefit borrowers hugely."
"The return of products to pre-pandemic levels is a real fillip for borrowers, with lenders getting more competitive with each other by the day. Deals may be short-lived but are being replaced by ones that are at least as competitive. "Advice on getting the right deal is an important part of the value an experienced broker brings to their clients. The aim should be to get the right product quickly offered, which then gives you three or even six months to draw funds, making it a much more relaxed process."
"It's great news that the number of mortgage products now available on the market has rebounded to pre-pandemic levels. This is a clear sign of a recovering market, and increasing competition among lenders keen to secure new business. "The hectic scramble for property has been joined by a scramble for new mortgage products as lenders issue a flurry of new rates and seem to withdraw them just as quickly. Given the pressure on buyers to move quickly to secure a property, getting a move on with their mortgage is very much in their interest."
"You secure the mortgage rate on offer. If the rate changes between the point of offer and completion, it can be either a good thing or a bad thing. "When mortgage rates fall, clients often want their mortgage re-offered at the new rate. This never happens when rates increase."
"With lenders constantly out-pricing each other, it has tempted borrowers into chopping and changing their preferences, which has caused extra delays in an already sluggish application process. "You can't blame borrowers for being drawn in by cheaper deals but the knock-on effect is slower completions and more room for sales to fall through."
"The availability of mortgage products has skyrocketed, meaning we are finding it much easier to find a potential home for a client's mortgage, but there are bottlenecks aplenty. "Some lenders are still blaming COVID for slow turnarounds when in reality it seems more like rampant demand overwhelming creaky systems, leaving prospective borrowers to wait longer than is reasonable for an update. "An example of this is a major high street lender that has been unable to have documents uploaded to submitted applications for over a week now. No one answers emails, you can't speak to anyone on the phone, and the webchat is unhelpful. Lenders need to do better. The other bottleneck is solicitors, who genuinely are working at capacity. The good firms simply can't take on more work, meaning that some buyers and sellers are ending up with some pretty ropey firms that fill any experienced mortgage adviser with a sense of dread."
Star Quote
"Lenders always review their product suites depending on a number of factors such as appetite for lending and the cost of funds within the market. The 'shelf life' of a product is therefore not the real issue. "The issue for borrowers in the current market is the length of time it is taking for transactions to complete, and this is causing previously agreed mortgage offers to lapse or require an extension. Some lenders only grant 5-day extensions and so chains are at risk of collapsing if the borrower cannot complete in time. "The other risk that crops up with longer transaction times is that there may have been a detrimental change in the lender's criteria or the borrower's personal circumstances, either of which could be catastrophic for the property transaction in question."
"Perhaps Joni Mitchell was referring to the UK mortgage market when she said, 'You don't know what you've got until it's gone'. "Gazumping could well be on the horizon if we're to believe the latest figures on product shelf life, although buyers and sellers alike will be only too aware of what's at stake. "To avoid losing out, it's best to seek advice from a broker because there are thousands of deals out there for a variety of circumstances."
"The fast-changing nature of the mortgage market at present means that picking the right broker to help you navigate the maze is critical. There are some really well-priced mortgage products at the moment, however the broker needs to package the case perfectly when submitting to the lender to ensure it's right first time, which can significantly reduce the time to offer."