Halifax Intermediaries pulls all products over 60% LTV
Halifax Intermediaries has removed all mortgage products over 60% LTV, apart from product transfers and further advances.
The lender has cut all mortgage products across its Halifax for Intermediaries, BM Solutions, and Scottish Widows Bank brands.
Purchase and remortgage products are both included in the removal.
However, customers will still be able to apply directly to the bank.
An email to brokers on the morning of 26 March, outlined that the group had taken the decision in order to focus on existing customers and supporting staff members.
Furthermore, customers with existing mortgage deals have been granted an additional three months to complete their home purchase/remo at the previously agreed mortgage rate.
Andrew Montlake, managing director of Coreco, said: “The Halifax’s decision to stop lending above 60% LTV reflects the wholesale recalibration of risk that is unfolding in the mortgage market.
“Not since the Credit Crunch have we seen lenders make such a flight to quality in limiting products to 60% LTV and below.
“In these unprecedented times, lenders, like a significant percentage of the world’s population, are going into lockdown.
“The decision of the Halifax is part logistics, of course, but to stop lending above 60% shows the seriousness with which it is taking Covid-19.
“With physical valuations on hold, for many lenders 60% LTV is the level at which they can engage their Automatic Valuation Models effectively from a risk perspective and process cases without too much human intervention.
“The issue will be that many remortgage customers may be forced to either stay with their existing lender or revert to more expensive standard variable rates until this crisis is over.
“The hope is that the mortgage market rebounds as fast as it is deteriorating once we come out the other side of Covid-19.”
Mike Jones, managing director, of intermediaries and specialist brands, said: “These are unprecedented times, so we need to constantly review the support we are offering to our customers.
“Being there for them when they need us is our priority and these temporary changes will enable us to focus on supporting our existing and pipeline customers in the short term.”