Will 50-year mortgages help/hinder the housing market

Journalist: Marc Shoffman, Freelance

ended 03. July 2022

I am writing a piece for Estate Agent Today on Boris Johnson's suggestions about creating 50 year mortgages.

https://www.theguardian.com/money/2022/jul/01/no-10-considers-50-year-mortgages-that-could-pass-down-generations

I am keen to get views from mortgage brokers and estate agents on if this would be good/bad for the housing market.

What impact would it have on price/transactions?

Many thanks

Marc

2 responses from the Newspage community

The idea of a 50-year or intergenerational mortgage is so ludicrous that I can't quite believe it's even being asked as a serious question. Allowing people to stretch further for longer would have the opposite effect of what younger people need; it would push house prices even higher, exacerbating our already dire problem. It would cause huge problems, not just in the property market, by reducing transaction levels but massive financial worries about the banking system's safety. You'd almost certainly have to mandate life insurance to mitigate some of the risks of such large long loans. I don't even think the government realise what the actual problem is. As a nation, we aren't building anywhere near the levels of homes we need, people's wages have stagnated for more than a decade while the cost of everything continues to rise and we've got an ageing population. We don't need any mortgage innovations from No10, certainly not this one. The mortgage market is functioning well and has innovative products and schemes to help people onto the property ladder. We've got fixed-for-term mortgages allowing first-time buyers to borrow up to six times their income with a 5% deposit. We've got lenders that will loan 100% LTV of the share on shared ownership properties. We've got lenders that will allow people to take a personal loan as a deposit so they can buy without having to save up, effectively giving them 100% LTV. Many lenders already go to 40 years and up to age 75 as long as it's feasible. We need houses to be built, and people need a pay rise. The government should stop with the dead cats and focus on the real issues rather than trying to grab headlines with this non-sensical policy that has no basis in reality.
If this got some traction behind it and that’s a big if. Naturally, with more people able to buy houses it’s going to push the demand through the roof. Until we can build houses quicker this is only going to send prices one way and that’s up. However, I’ve got reservations on if this will ever get off the ground given it would go against the robust affordability checks they brought in to avoid a repeat on 2007 financial crisis.