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MBT Affordability Index: Right lender choice can result in property upgrades

Jessica Nangle

November 12, 2020

Choosing the right lender can make the difference between securing a detached house over a semi-detached property for home movers, according to the latest MBT Affordability Index.

The MBT Affordability Index found that the average maximum loan available to home movers was £318,571 in October, whilst the average minimum available loan offered to home movers was £157,000 – a difference of £161,571.

Figures from the ONS suggest that the average cost of a semi-detached home in the UK is £230,455, whilst the average price of a detached house is £365,316 – a difference of £134,861.

For home movers looking to achieve the maximum affordable loan for their circumstances, MBT Affordability say that shopping around and choosing the right lender could make a considerable difference to how much they can borrow and the type of property they are able to buy.

It could, for example, mean an extra bedroom, space for home working or a garden.

The MBT Affordability Index found that that the average maximum loan available to first-time buyers was £274,500 in October, whilst the average minimum available loan offered to first-time buyers was £140,828.

That’s a difference of £133,672, which could be enough to upgrade from a flat to a semi-detached house.

According to the ONS, the average price of a flat or maisonette in the UK is £203,708, whilst the average cost of a semi-detached house is £230,455.

The MBT Affordability Index found that, for the whole market, the average maximum loan available decreased in October to £274,500, down from £283,355 in September.

However, the minimum average loan offered by lenders increased slightly to £132,495 in October, up from £131,700 in September.

Tanya Toumadj, chief executive at Mortgage Broker Tools, said: “The latest edition of the MBT Affordability Index provides another clear example of the huge disparity in the amount that different lenders are prepared to lend based on the same set of customer circumstances, and this could prove to be the difference in a home buyer being able to afford a bigger property or more desirable location.

“We know from reports from estate agents that larger properties and those with more outside space are in greater demand as a result of the pandemic and shopping around to achieve the best affordability calculation could help customers to achieve this.

“There are considerations in taking on a larger loan size but being able to upgrade the property they buy now, may save customers from making multiple home moves in the future and could ultimately save them money in the long-term.

“Of course, whole of market research is time consuming and can be difficult, which is why we recommend that customers seek professional advice from a mortgage broker, and that brokers make use of online platforms, like MBT Affordability, to take the strain and help deliver more suitable recommendations to their clients.”


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