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Mortgages

Choosing the right mortgage for you!

Here is an overview of the different types of mortgage rates available.

Variable Rate

The monthly payment fluctuates in line with the lender's mortgage rate. This can cause budgeting problems in times of increasing interest rates. Some lenders offer an annual review so that the amount you pay only changes once a year with the difference adjusting your outstanding mortgage. Lenders may also offer a version where your monthly payment fluctuates in line with the Bank of Englands Base Rate, often referred to as a 'Base Rate Tracker'.

Fixed Rate

The monthly payment is fixed over an agreed period of time and will remain the same regardless of whether interest rates rise or fall.

At the end of the fixed rate term the interest rate usually reverts to the lender's standard variable rate or you may be offered the choice of another product, on the terms available at that time.

Discounted

The lender offers a true initial discount from their standard variable rate, for a given period.

Cashback

Some lenders offer a cash payment on completion of the loan, either based on a percentage of the total loan or a flat amount. In some cases if the loan is redeemed early, a proportion of the cashback may have to be repayed to the lender.

Capped rate

The interest rate is guaranteed not to go above a certain level throughout the capped rate period, which can be from one to ten years, but you will benefit from any reduction in interest rates.

Collared rate

The interest rate will not fall below a certain level for the collared rate period.

Flexible mortgages

These schemes allow you to overpay, underpay or even take a payment holiday. Any unpaid interest will be added to the outstanding mortgage. Any overpayment will reduce your outstanding mortgage. Some have the facility to draw down additional funds to a pre-agreed limit.

Lenders that offer any type of fixed rate, discount or cashback facilities to attract custom, usually require the mortgage to stay with them for a period of time to recoup the costs. They do this by imposing an early repayment charge for a given period which can extend beyond the benefit period. They will usually make an early repayment charge if you want to redeem your mortgage early.

Early repayment penalties will be charged if you die within the early repayment period so you should consider building this in to the level of life cover you have. You should also make sure that you can afford the standard variable rate that will be charged at the end of the discounted or fixed rate period.

Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.