What the papers said about a new price war and mortgage carrots

Following the recent release of a new sub-1% fixed rate, the weekend’s financial press heralded a new mortgage price war, with the Daily Mail urging borrowers to act now and take advantage while they still can. Rates cannot stay this low for much longer, said experts.

Rock-bottom rates don’t always represent the best value for everyone however, with many of the ‘best buys’ carrying large arrangement fees. It’s vital therefore that homeowners do their sums to work out the overall cost of a deal, to find the most competitively priced deal for them.

On the whole, interest rates have come down so low that lenders must now find other ways to entice customers, and an increasingly popular incentive comes in the form of cashback. As the Guardian highlighted, the average amount offered is just under £400, but some major lenders are now offering as much as £2,500. This could certainly be an attractive prospect for First Time Buyers or those moving home, but again the decision to take a particular mortgage should be based on individual financial needs and pricing.

Elsewhere, the Financial Times revealed the impact of the 3% stamp duty surcharge on the ‘Bank of Mum and Dad’. Experts suggested that parents will be less likely to co-buy with their children, although some lenders have provided a way round this by allowing the child to take sole title on the property while the mortgage remains on a joint basis.

Finally, as we approach a new tax year the Sunday Times carried an Isa special, and looked at next month’s launch of the new Lifetime ISA in comparison to the Help to Buy ISA. The Bank of Mum and Dad still provides a great deal of financial support, but the new products like this will be a useful tool for those looking to make the most of their savings.

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