News & Insight

Our expert views and commentary on what’s happening in the world of mortgages and sometimes beyond, along with our regular summary of what the papers say.

What the papers said about ISA’s and remortgaging

The Guardian and Times both reported this weekend on newly released Government figures, which show that a million Help to Buy ISA accounts have been opened since December 2015. These accounts, they suggest, have helped struggling First-Time Buyers save £1.8bn. ...

Picnic basket competition winner revealed

Thanks to everyone who entered our competition to win a four person picnic hamper. After receiving over 900 entries, we’ve now chosen a winner. Congratulations to......

Government announces crackdown on leaseholds for new-build homes

Leaseholds on new build-houses could soon be banned under new proposals being considered by the government. The government said that it will consult on whether to prohibit the sale of new build leasehold houses and limit the amount of ground rent that can be charged. ...

Another win for L&C!

Another win for L&C! L&C Mortgages was named Best National Mortgage Adviser at the 2017 What Mortgage Awards on July 19, the sixth consecutive year L&C has won the award....

More changes on the way for landlords

More changes on the way for landlords.. Landlords who own four or more mortgaged buy-to-let properties can soon expect lenders to look across their whole portfolio if they want to apply for a mortgage on a new property....

What the papers say about the new Buy-to-Let rules, New Build and Critical Illness Cover

The Times focused on the new Buy to Let rules from the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) that will come into force this October. They will affect ‘portfolio landlords’ (those with 4 or more mortgaged properties). Previously, lenders might assess a new mortgage in isolation but will now have to undertake a review of all the client’s assets, liability, tax position, business plan and exit strategy. Buy to Let Mortgage lenders are beginning to announce how they will implement these changes,...

Property prices show signs of cooling

The traditional spring bounce in the housing market failed to materialise this year, according to Halifax’s latest house price index, which showed prices have fallen for the third quarter running....

Is 35 years becoming the new norm?

The Telegraph was keen to highlight that in the first quarter of 2017 almost one in seven borrowers took a mortgage term of 35 years or more.......

Clarity on mortgage stress tests

Lenders will have to adopt a more uniform approach to mortgage stress tests, following a clarification of the rules by the Bank of England’s Financial Policy Committee (FPC)....

L&C Mortgages win again!

L&C Mortgages was named Best Mortgage Adviser at the prestigious Money Marketing Awards held in London on June 22. The awards recognise those who have reached the top of their field ..............

How far ahead can I start a remortgage?

How far ahead can I start a remortgage? Looking to remortgage? Don’t assume you have to wait until your existing deal finishes before you can start the ball rolling. If you’ve spotted a mortgage deal you really want, or you’re concerned that fixed rate deals are edging up and want to lock into a low rate now, it is possible to secure a new deal even if you’re currently tied into another mortgage. Many remortgage offers are valid for between three and six months from the date they ar...

Using the Bank of Mum and Dad to get on the Property Ladder

The number of first-time buyers relying on the ‘Bank of Mum and Dad’ to help them onto the property ladder has risen to a record high, according to new research. More than a third of first-time buyers now turn to their family for financial help when buying a property, a study by the Social Mobility Commission found, compared to one in five seven years ago. One in 10 relies on inherited wealth to fund their property purchase. The Commission claims that this increasing reliance on financial...

First-time buyers continue to buoy mortgage market

First-time buyers and those remortaging continue to drive lending activity, according to the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML), whilst the number of home movers and buy to let borrowers is falling. The number of buy to let purchases is nearly half what it was a year ago, the CML said, averaging around 6,000 purchases a month over the last 12 months. Buy to let figures have fallen dramatically following the introduction of the second home stamp...

Interest-only market decreases

Less than 2m interest-only mortgages across the UK remain outstanding, according to the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML), down from 3.2m in 2012. There are currently 1.9m interest-only loans, with a third of these due to mature in the 2030s. With this type of mortgage, as the name suggests, you only repay the interest on the amount you’ve borrowed each month. The capital must be repaid when the mortgage term ends. Millions of borrowers took out this type of...

First cash Lifetime ISA introduced

Skipton Building Society has become the first savings provider to launch a cash Lifetime individual savings account (LISA), designed to help first time buyers save for a deposit, or for retirement. ...

Up or down? Where next for house prices

Homeowners may be wondering which way to turn after two of Britain’s biggest lenders produced conflicting views on which way house prices are going. ...

Demand for property slows in May

Political uncertainty may have led to many property buyers and sellers sitting tight in May, according to the latest UK Residential Market Survey from the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyers (RICS) ...

Win a picnic hamper from L&C

Summer is upon us and this can only mean one thing... That's right, we're talking about Wimbledon. And to celebrate the return of Wimbledon this summer, we're giving our customers (and website visitors) the chance to win the ultimate four person picnic basket. Just add strawberries and cream....

First-Timers overtake homeowners

The number of first time buyers over the past year has overtaken the number of home movers for the first time in more than a decade. ...

Are you ‘Just About Managing’?

Over 1.4m people are struggling to pay their mortgages, but there are plenty of steps borrowers can take to help make their monthly payments more manageable. ...

L&C water pump is under construction

We’re proud to support AquAid by purchasing their water coolers and installing them in each of our offices. Our AquAid water cooler not only benefits our employees, but also gives us the opportunity to help others – slightly further afield....

What the papers said about 99 months of low rates and taking action

May is the 99th month that the Bank of England has kept its base rate at or below 0.50%. Around 2.5 million people have bought their first property since then, according to the Council of Mortgage Lenders, and will not yet have witnessed base rate moving in the opposite direction. ...

Interest rates held at 0.25%

The Bank of England left the base rate unchanged at 0.25% in it’s May meeting, but warned that rising living costs and falling wages will mean “challenging” times for many households this year. ...

Mortgage debt for the over 65's on the rise

Borrowing into older age is set to become increasingly common, according to a new report, with several lenders already showing a more flexible approach to people in their 60s and 70s. ...

Leasehold Vs Freehold

If you’re looking to buy a home, it’s vital to understand the difference between buying a property which is freehold, and one which is leasehold. Let us explain the differences between the two, and the financial implications for homebuyers....

House Price growth drops for second month

House prices fell by 0.4% in April, according to Nationwide Building Society’s latest House Price Index, the second consecutive month that prices have dropped. ...

Win the ultimate chocolate feast with L&C

Take part in the L&C Easter egg hunt and you could win this Easter Hamper from Hotel Chocolat. We’ve hidden three small Easter eggs on the L&C Website. Use the clues below to find the three eggs that we’ve hidden. For the chance to win this Hotel Chocolat Hamper, simply find the eggs that are labelled with city names and list...

Annual house price growth slows

The latest Nationwide House Price Index highlights a fall in property prices of 0.3% in March, the first drop since June 2015. ...

What is let to buy?

Let to buy can be an option for those who want to purchase a new home whilst keeping hold of their current property and letting it out. As someone looking to buy a new property, it can allow you to release some equity from your current home and put it down as a deposit on your new one.It’s a popular choice for couples who move in together later in life, perhaps once they both already have their own properties. In this case, you’d both move into o...

Afternoon tea competition winner - revealed

After receiving a huge number of entries, we’ve now chosen a competition winner for our Afternoon Tea at Fortnum and Mason competition. Congratulations to our first, second and third prize winners......

Eight years of low rates

The Bank of England chose to keep interest rates on hold again in March, marking eight years of rock-bottom mortgage rates for homeowners. ...

Spring Budget 2017

Property and the housing market were noticeable by their absence in this year’s Spring Budget, quashing hopes of any reduction in stamp duty costs or other help for ...

How to get a mortgage if you’re self-employed

Applying for a mortgage can be tricky, but if you’re a self-employed worker, freelancer or contractor, you could face extra challenges. Here's what you'll need to get a mortgage as a self-employed person... ...

L&C “Piece of Cake” Event Roundup – L&C

L&C “Piece of Cake” Baking Event Roundup To celebrate the launch of our new cake-orientated TV advert (you can watch it here if you haven’t seen it yet), we decided to host our very own bake-off with ten of the UK’s top food, travel, lifestyle & parenting bloggers....

Easter Competition Ts and Cs

For a chance to win the Hotel Chocolat Happy Easter Hamper, simply find the three Easter eggs on the L&C webpage and tell us the place names of the three eggs before midnight on Monday 17th April 2017. Terms and conditions apply....

Five questions to ask when viewing a house

Buying a property is likely to be the biggest purchase you’ll ever make, so it’s vital you choose carefully. Here are five things you should ask when viewing a property....

Baking Cakes with L&C

London & Country is hosting a baking event with some of the UK’s top bloggers, to celebrate our new TV ad....

Advantages of using a mortgage broker

Let’s face it, if you’re buying a home or remortgaging, the huge choice of mortgages available can seem bewildering. Should you go for a fixed rate deal, a variable rate deal, or an offset mortgage? And how much will you be able to afford?...

Eight things to do before you exchange

If you’re buying a home, chances are you’ll want to exchange contracts as soon as possible to seal the deal. But rushing in without finding out everything you need to know about the property you’re purchasing could end up costing you more. Here are eight things you need to do before exchanging contracts....

New Year mortgage resolutions

Your mortgage is likely to be your biggest monthly outgoing, so if you haven’t reviewed yours for a while, it’s a good idea to make sure you aren’t paying more than you need to. ...

2016 Review and Outlook

Last year isn’t one any of us are likely to forget in a hurry thanks to Brexit, but amidst all the political turmoil, homebuyers and owners enjoyed some of the lowest mortgage rates ever recorded. ...

L&C mortgages latest TV advert

Today we are excited to launch our latest TV ad - Let’s L&C. Choosing a mortgage isn’t as simple as choosing a cake, so it shouldn’t be treated like one. With the right expert help from L&C, the whole process can be a piece of cake. ...

6 surprising things that affect your house value

If you're selling your home you'll want to get the best price possible, but there could be things you aren't even aware of that are affecting its value. Here we reveal six surprising things that could affect your property's price....

Competition terms and conditions

1. The competition runs from 8am 17/01/2017 until midnight 17/03/2017. Entries received after this time will not be put forward for the draw. 2. The prize draw is open to residents of the UK aged 18 or over, excluding employees or agencies of London & Country Mortgages, MoneySuperMarket or their respective group companies or families or anyone else connected to the Prize Draw....

Explaining the terms - completion and exchange

When buying a property in England or Wales, two of the most important terms to get to grips with are ‘exchange’ and ‘completion’. Only once you’ve done both of these will you be able to get your hands on the keys to your new home. Here’s what you need to know....

Tips to add value to your home

If you’re looking to bump up the value of your property, perhaps with a view to selling it, then the good news is that lots of improvements can be made without breaking the bank. Here are our top tips on how to add value to your home....

How to save on your winter houshold bills

How to save on your winter household bills: As winter draws ever nearer and energy bills begin to climb, we wanted to share some simple steps to save money on your household bills with small changes that will make a big difference....

Autumn Statement 2016

Phillip Hammond has delivered his first Autumn Statement as Chancellor of the Exchequer. Compared to recent budgets and statements there was relatively little directly affecting the housing market though we did get two further housing initiatives announced: ...

Annual house price growth eases

The annual rate of growth has continued to ease, slowing from 5.8% in September to 5.2% in October, according to the latest Halifax House Price Index. ...

Santander tightens buy-to-let lending policy

Santander has announced it will tighten the rental calculation for landlords from 23rd November. This makes them the first major lender to declare policy changes since the Prudential Regulatory Authority published new requirements in September....

Making sense of solicitors’ quotes

You’ve found a property you want to buy and got your mortgage application ready to go, so now you need to hire a solicitor and make sense of their quotes...

Bank of England holds base rate at 0.25%

Although there had been suggestions that a further cut to Base Rate could be on the cards, it came as little surprise that the Bank of England elected to make no change in its November meeting. ...

How to help your mortgage affordability

When you apply for a mortgage, lenders will look to your bank statements to help them decide how much you can afford to borrow. Follow these simple steps to boost your mortgage affordability...

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