SRBS doubles pipeline
The latest Building Society Association figures show that mortgages approved by the mutual sector were up 12% in March (compared to the same period last year) and up 26% on mortgages approved in February.
Susan Whiting, chief executive of Stafford Railway Building Society, said: “Our sector remains open for business but perhaps some of the big banks are not doing enough.
“The first-time buyer market is crucial as it sets chains in motion allowing others to trade up and this group generally needs at least a 90% mortgage with very limited options available for anyone with just a 5% deposit.
“We can lend up to 95% but the excess over 75% loan to value has to have additional security such as a deposit account or equity in another property.
“Where that is not possible we have another option for lenders with a 10% deposit – the rate is 3.99% which compares very well with other 90% mortgages nationally and they simply pay a higher lending charge which is effectively a one-off insurance premium to cover the excess over 75%.”
With consistently standard variable rates available from just 3.49% – overall cost for comparison 3.60% APR – Stafford Railway is also enjoying a healthy upsurge in remortgage business across England and Wales.
Whiting added: “Many people are still paying too much on their mortgages and again I wonder if it’s because they hear the banks aren’t lending as readily and, consequently, believe there are no better mortgage deals to be had out there?
“It’s a shame because lower monthly repayments are readily available plus there is scope to overpay without any penalties and reduce the capital balance much quicker.”
Stafford Railway Building Society is currently offering a refund of the cost of the basic survey fee of up to £500 on all remortgages.
The society also offers a buy-to-let mortgage (from 4.50% standard variable rate with a maximum LTV of 75%) but again with no arrangement fees, tie-in periods or complex product features.