Worried about rising interest rates? Here are a few things you can do

17th July 2023

Worried about rising interest rates? Here are a few things you can do
Many people are on fixed-rate mortgages right now, and with the current rise in the base rate, it’s a good thing because it means your mortgage will not increase. But what if you want to move now and take advantage of the huge choice of inspiring homes available, and your mortgage deal is coming to an end?

Why another increase in the base rate?
The Bank of England raises the base interest rate to curb inflation. Inflation is the increase in the cost of goods and services, or the cost of living. The idea is that an increase in interest rates means more people will save instead of spending, which reduces inflation as there is less demand for goods and services. The rate of inflation is still way short of the Bank of England’s 2% target, but the bank expects inflation to fall to 5% by the end of this year.* There are a few reasons for this. Wholesale energy prices have fallen, and the price of imported goods is expected to fall as production issues are resolved and there is less demand for goods and services in the UK.

Here are a few things you can do now:
Interest rates may be a little on the high side now, so if you take out a mortgage now, there is nothing to stop you from changing your deal in a couple of years when rates are more favourable. In the meantime, here are a few options for you to consider:
  • The Mortgage Guarantee Scheme: extended until the end of December 2023, this government-backed scheme has helped over 24,000 households get on the property ladder.** Its aim is to help people with a 5% deposit, and it was launched in April 2021. Aimed at first-time buyers, it’s similar to the government’s Help to Buy scheme, which ended earlier this year. So, if you want to take advantage of it, you need to be quick.
  • 35-year mortgage deals: increasing the term of your mortgage could bring down the cost of your monthly mortgage payments. You may pay more interest because you are taking longer to pay for the home you want, but a property that may have been out of reach may suddenly be in your grasp.
  • 100% mortgages: saving your deposit is often the biggest challenge to getting a footing on the property ladder. With the return of 100% mortgages, you no longer have this hurdle, and that will save you a lot of time, meaning you can start paying off your mortgage sooner rather than later.
  • Interest only mortgages: another option to consider is an interest only mortgage, which could lead to much lower payments. If you have a lot of equity in your home, this could stand you in good stead when it comes to buying the home you want now.
  • Green mortgages: many mortgage lenders now offer more competitive mortgage interest rates for greener, more energy-efficient homes. This, combined with lower energy bills, means that you could save significantly on your monthly outgoings. This means that the EPC rating of your home has never been more important.
  • Consider porting your mortgage: porting allows you to move home with your existing mortgage. So, if you are happy with the terms of your current deal and it’s not about to end any time soon, then this could be a cost-saving solution. You may be able to borrow more, as many high-street lenders offer top-up mortgages. Speaking with your broker is important, as some lenders’ rules may differ.
  • There is always a way: it could be that you are in the fortunate position of not needing to borrow or are on a fixed-rate interest deal. With the huge number of mortgage deals available and inspiring choices in properties, it’s worth talking to your agent if you are determined to make your move now.