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Deposits and mortgage finance - a growing concern for consumers?

POSTED: 25th April 2014
IN: Personal News
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We have seen a number of positive trends in the UK economy over the past year or so, most notably the steady fall in unemployment and growth in gross domestic product.

We have seen a number of positive trends in the UK economy over the past year or so, most notably the steady fall in unemployment and growth in gross domestic product. undefined

However, it seems that there are still some key areas of consumer finance that are causing great public concern.

A recent report from the Building Societies Association (BSA) suggested that people are becoming increasingly anxious about raising deposits for a property purchase and accessing mortgage finance.

Fears about deposits were found to be higher than at any time in the last two years, with nearly two-thirds (63 per cent) of respondents to a survey saying this is the biggest obstacle to buying a home.

The study also found that interest rates are seen as the biggest risk for the housing market.

Just under three in ten (29 per cent) consumers said they had concerns about potential rate rises, up slightly from 27 per cent in December 2013.

However, four out of ten (40 per cent) people thought now is a good time to buy a property.

This month sees a major change to lending practices coming into effect as a result of the mortgage market review.

New rules will officially come into force on April 26th, but some lenders started to implement the changes early.

Paul Broadhead, head of mortgage policy at the BSA, said the process of getting a home loan is changing, but stressed that borrowers should not be put off by the new system.

He pointed out that the majority of applicants will receive mortgage advice and should expect to provide more in-depth details about their earnings and spending.

"A new feature is the requirement for a lender not only to establish that a borrower can afford the loan at the current interest rate, but also if the rate were to rise," added Mr Broadhead.

"Overall, whilst some people may not be able to borrow as much as they expect it does not mean that those on lower incomes or those with smaller deposits will be frozen out of the property market."

The Bank of England has indicated that, should interest rates increase towards the end of 2015, the change will be gradual.

Mr Broadhead also pointed out that rising interest rates are a positive sign of economic recovery.

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