Asking prices rise but mortgages prove trickier to come by

Despite the ongoing pandemic, combined with the summer holidays, the housing market ‘mini-boom’ shows no signs of slowing down. Right move reports that Britons bought and sold a record number of homes between mid-July and early August, with the highest number of home sales agreed since it began tracking the data more than a decade ago.

The normal summer softening in demand failed to materialise this year as the experience of lock-down meant people’s housing priorities changed. This, combined with pent-up demand which pre-dates lock-down and the stamp duty holiday, has produced a significant upturn in the market.

Yet while buyers are keen to move, getting a mortgage might not be quite as straightforward as they may have hoped. Mortgage rates remain extremely competitive, particularly for those with sizeable deposits, but lenders are struggling to cope with the rise in demand. Many of their staff are still working from home, dealing with mortgage payment holidays and bounce-back loans, and lenders are worried that the end of the furlough scheme will impact people’s incomes, so are asking more questions about applications. This is all making the process much slower than normal.

Those looking for a mortgage would do well to consult a whole-of-market broker such as AWS Financial Services who can search the market on your behalf. We know which lenders are struggling to process applications, so if you are in a hurry, we will ensure we choose a lender who can move quickly. And if it turns out that your application takes a while because the lender is subsequently inundated with business, we can liaise with them on your behalf so that you don’t miss out on the property you have set your heart on.

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