Mortgages are one of the largest single transactions in most people’s lives. Buying a property can be a stressful and time consuming experience, although nowadays the financing of a mortgage is a case of finding and selecting the most suitable mortgage, rather than simply accepting a lender’s offer.
Banks, building societies, and smaller niche lenders compete for your business, all offering a variety of interest rate deals, associated fees and other enhancements to attract borrowers.
There are main methods of repaying a mortgage, capital and repayment and interest only. It is also sometimes possible to set this up using a combination of the two. A description of these methods is provided below.
Repayment (capital and interest) Method
Under the repayment method your monthly repayments consist of both interest and capital hence, over time, the amount of money you actually owe will decrease. In the early years your repayments will be mainly interest and therefore the capital outstanding will reduce slowly in the early years.
This method ensures that the mortgage is repaid at the end of the term providing all payments are made on time and in full.
As the name suggests, with the interest only method you only repay the interest on the amount borrowed. At the end of the term the capital is still outstanding. Therefore you will usually need to take out some kind of investment policy to save up enough money to repay the mortgage at the end of the term.
Traditionally the preferred product for repaying the capital of an interest only mortgage was a mortgage endowment policy (which included a set amount of life cover) – although more recently customers are using Individual Savings Accounts (ISAs) and pensions to build up a sufficient sum and taking advantage of the tax breaks offered by these products.
As a mortgage is secured against your home, it could be repossessed if you do not keep up the mortgage repayments
There are several terms used to describe the interest rates you pay on a mortgage, and the key terms are as follows:
Standard Variable Rate (SVR) – The SVR is the lenders standard rate. With a variable rate mortgage you are normally able to switch lenders at any time without being penalised. If you take out a mortgage that has a fixed, tracker or discounted rate once the set period of time ends the loan will usually revert to the Lenders SVR.
Fixed Rate – A fixed rate mortgage allows you to repay interest at a fixed rate, irrespective of any interest rate fluctuations. In other words your monthly repayments will remain the same every month for a time period agreed between you and your lender.
Tracker – A tracker mortgages usually tracks any movement in an index specified by the lender, this for example could be the Bank of England Base Rate for a set period, so you will benefit from any falls in interest rates, but will also have to pay more each month should the rate increase.
Discount – The discount mortgage rate is another variation of the standard variable rate. It provides a discount from the lenders SVR for a set period of time. The variable interest rate still fluctuates, meaning your monthly repayments may differ slightly from month to month, but the discount remains constant.
Fixed, Tracker and Discount rate mortgages often have early repayment charges so you need to be sure this is suitable for you for the foreseeable future. Furthermore, the lender may also charge a ‘booking/arrangement fee’ to apply for these types of mortgage. You should ask your adviser to explain these in more detail, or ask for an illustration.
The Financial Conduct Authority does not regulate some forms of buy-to-let mortgages.
I have referred clients to Claire Taylor for the past 10 years. Claire provides a high quality, client focussed and pro-active financial advisory service and develops excellent long term client relationships. Her level of knowledge and expertise in the financial services sector is first class and I would not hesitate in recommending clients to her and her company.
We have known Richard for a number of years and are therefore confident that the advice he gives can be relied on to be carefully considered for our financial requirements and resources through his professional knowledge and personal interviews. He reviews our financial planning at regular intervals and is always available to discuss any matters promptly and gives straight forward explanations of our investments in a friendly and informative manner.
I have known Richard for many years now, originally through Lloyds Bank negotiations and more recently as my financial advisor. I consider it an honour to be taken on as one of his private clients and would thoroughly recommend him to anyone seeking advice about financial matters. Richard is a very astute and friendly person. His dealings on my behalf are extremely well prepared and thoroughly researched. He is most patient and tolerant when I need clarification on any point and I am always treated as if I am Richard's only client. In these uncertain times he is always someone on whom I can rely and am very grateful for all his help and advice.
I can not recommend high enough the first class service I have had from Paul and his team dealing in all aspects for my family and friends.
I feel extremely confident in the hands of Claire and the team. Nothing is ever too much trouble. Claire arranges regular consultations and takes time to explain anything that I may not understand, answering any questions and researching product information to provide the very best advice. All in all a great service that I would highly recommend.
After the sudden death of my husband of 42 years, I was left to make sense of our investments and savings. Claire came to my house and helped me plan my financial future. She took care to explain my options. Her professionalism and knowledge is impressive. I can pick up the phone to her at any time.
Paul from Southernhay arrived at our hour of need, like anyone self-employed we are always classed as odd! Well after he parked his white charger he came in took some details and went off to see what he could do. A day or so later Paul had let us know he had spoken with our accountant and lender with an in principle decision, WOW! So with a little bit of form filling (all correct but relaxed and not pressurised which comes from Paul's experience) mortgage dealt with in weeks not months and cover in place. Job done! I would recommend Paul to anyone wanted to look at Mortgage finance, the transaction was a pleasure from start to finish!
I have an excellent working relationship with Richard, he has been dealing with my finance for the past few years and would recommend him to anyone who seeks financial advice.