Higher standard variable rates (SVR) are expected to encourage borrowers to remortgage at the end of their fixed-term, with Moneyfacts.co.uk predicting activity peaking in October this year.
The latest research by Moneyfacts suggests that an upsurge in remortgaging activity could be on the cards. Data show that borrowers who opted for a two-year fixed rate mortgage in 2017, when the average interest rate was 2.30%, could see their interest rate more than double if they revert to the average standard variable rate of 4.89% at the end of their term.
Fixed-terms ending in October 2019 will see highest increase
All borrowers coming out of a fixed-term of two or more years in 2019, will be keen to avoid a significant hike in their monthly mortgage payments. Moneyfacts data suggests the impact will be even more costly for those that borrowed in October 2017, when the average two-year fixed rate mortgage rate fell to a record low of 2.20%.
Borrowers that fail to remortgage when their term ends this October will revert to their lenders SVR – the current average SVR is 4.69%. For a repayment mortgage of £250,000, on a fixed-rate of 2.20% until October 2019, reverting to the SVR could increase their mortgage payments by £4,336.20 per year.
Remortgaging will save borrowers thousands
Savvy borrowers will avoid sitting on their lenders SVR for even one month and save themselves thousands by looking at their options well in advance of their fixed rate ending. The current average two-year fixed rate is 2.47%, far lower than the average SVR, and there are still many lender deals with rates lower than 2%.
It’s also likely that the increase in demand for remortgages this year could see lenders lowering rates as they compete for new customers, something borrowers should be watching out for.
Darren Cook, finance expert at Moneyfacts.co.uk, said: “The significant increase in motivation for borrowers to switch mortgage deals, and the subsequent potential increase in remortgage business, as a result, may push some mortgage lenders to marginally cut rates over the next few months to maintain a competitive edge”.