On the money mortgage advice

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Chris Hall, business owner of Mortgage Advice Bureau in Norwich, comments on the Monetary Policy Committee’s decision to retain the Bank Base Rate at 0.5pc for January.

With many economic forecasters now firmly expecting the economy to have returned to growth, some are now expecting the Bank of England to start to increase the low Bank Base Rate that we have all enjoyed and benefited from over the last twelve months. The questions we all want to know

When is this likely to happen?

Some forecasters still believe that the base rates will be maintained in the short term as the outlook for the wider economy is still far from clear. The Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors are forecasting bank base rates to be raised in the second half of 2010, but others believe that rates may start to be increased as early as March of this year.

So what does it all mean for homeowners?

Many would-be remortgage borrowers have quite understandably been put off from switching their mortgage, as many lenders’ standard variable rates have previously offered such great value in relation to any new remortgage products on offer. However, it is best not to be complacent as some of the smaller Building Societies have already started to increase their standard variable rates. Other borrowers have also been put off switching their mortgage due to lower equity levels as a result of house price falls during 2007/08. This has meant that some of the best remortgage rates were out of reach due to those customers with a high loan to value ratio, which lenders would not have considered. The last few weeks have continued to see the main high street lenders compete for business with almost weekly rate reductions on both tracker and fixed rate products and this is good news for home movers, and in particular those who are now potentially thinking of remortgaging for whatever reason.

You can contact Chris on 01603 867 254 or visit

www.mortgageadvicebureau/norwich

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