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FCA Accused Of Interest-Only Mortgage ScaremongeringThe Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has been accused of scaremongering when it comes to dealing with outstanding interest only mortgages.

You may remember that Spotlight reported that the FCA warned that almost half the 2.6 million or so UK property owners that have interest only mortgages would not have savings or other funds to cover the final bill at the end of the tenure.

Read the article here

Interest only mortgages represent approximately 33% of all UK mortgages.

With Interest only mortgage holders only paying enough to cover the monthly mortgage interest on the amount borrowed, the average shortfall is £71,000 (GBP) per person, according to the published FCA research.

The FCA, the new watchdog for the sector taking over from the Financial Services Authority (FSA), commissioned the research to provide a clear indication of what mortgage borrowers could face when their Interest Only mortgages mature between now and 2041.

Property investors and Buy-To-Let landlords are still wise to select interest only mortgages, rather than waste money by opting for capital repayment mortgages from the outset.

Landlords choose interest only mortgages to purchase rental properties because they are the cheapest option and may choose to switch to a repayment option at any time once the rental income is coming in.

Peter Williams, Executive Director of the Intermediary Mortgage Lenders Association (IMLA),said: “By confirming that nine in every ten interest only (IO) borrowers have a repayment strategy in place, the FCA’s research should put an end to misguided reports of a mis-selling ‘scandal’ when the market boomed between 2002 and 2007. Having said that, as both the Experian report for the FCA and the GfK report shows, there are issues for the industry to deal with.” 

Market research firm GfK NOP questioned 1,103 interest only borrowers to consider how prepared they were to repay their loans.

The study found that 37% of interest only mortgage holders faced a shortfall in their plans to pay back the lump sum of the home loan, based on their own calculations.

But the FCA believes that many people underestimated the financial problem and it believes 48% of interest only mortgage holders will face a shortfall.

Martin Wheatley, Chief Executive of the FCA, said: “My advice to borrowers is not to bury their head in the sand over interest only mortgages. This report is a call to action.”

275,000 new tenants flooded the UK Private Rental Sector in 2011 – a 24% increase on the previous year.

275,000 new tenants flooded the UK Private Rented Sector in 2011

Latest Government Figures Confirm What savvy UK Property Investors & Landlords already knew

Latest Government figures confirm the steady decline of UK Home ownership and the social rented sector, (Council Houses), together with the indisputable rise of the Private Rented Sector (PRS) following the credit crunch.

The figures confirm what property investors who have been expanding their rental property portfolios already know, Buy-To-Let in the UK is BOOMING!

The new 2010-2011 English Housing Survey shows that in that period;

  • 66% of households (14.5 Million) were owner occupiers, down 1% from the previous year, continuing the downward trend observed since 2007.
  • The social rented sector last year accounted for 17.5% (3.8 Million households)
  • The private rented sector accounted for 16.5% (3.6 Million households).
  • Thirty years ago, there were over 3 Million more tenants in the social housing sector than in the private rented sector.

Now the gap is just 200,000.

Last year, a total of 394,000 new households were formed in England

  • 68% were private tenants forming 268,000 of the new households
  • 14% were owner occupiers (55,000 households)
  • 18% were social renters (71,000 households).

One key difference is that couples with no dependent children were the most common type of household in 2010-11 with 35% in the owner occupied and 43% in the private rental sector.

However, the most common type of household in the social rented sector was a single person aged 60 or over (24%).

17% of tenants in the social sector, were lone parents with dependent children, compared to 12% of tenants in the private rented sector with the same status. The figures compared to just 3% of owner occupiers.

In 2011, private sector rent was around twice that of social rents (an average weekly £160 compared to £79).
In the same period, 63% of social renters and 25% or private tenants received Local Housing Allowance (LHA) or Housing Benefit.

Another key difference is in length of tenure: 54% of private tenants had been in their home for under two years, whilst 59% of owner occupiers and 43% of social tenants had been in their home for ten years or longer.

Chief Executive of Countrywide, Grenville Turner, said of the survey: “Successive governments have widely encouraged home ownership but the impact of the recession has led to a structural change in the property market. The impact of this has caused an additional 275,000 new tenants to flood the private rental sector in 2011 – a 24% increase on the previous year. Current demand levels indicate that there will soon be more people in the private rental sector than social housing, which will only add to the already saturated demand and supply imbalance in the market.”

BTL landlords can cash in on the current rental property boom by utilising the wide range of landlord and letting agent services offered by Legal4Landlords.com to ensure thorough tenant vetting and cashflow, including Tenant Referencing, Landlord Insurance, Rent Guarantee Insurance as well as Debt / Rent Recovery and Eviction services.The full report contains information about overcrowding, occupancy patterns, energy use and decent homes and can be found at the link below.

http://www.communities.gov.uk/publications/corporate/statistics/ehs201011headlinereport

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