It always makes me smile when I get slagged off for some comments I have made by various bloggers who disagree with me. Not because I find their comments amusing, as their opinions are as valid as mine, but because it means by provoking discussion it shows that I am doing something right.
This time I was slated for my comments that appeared yesterday on the BBC News website by a blog entitled Back Office Wine. The nameless person writing writes very well and has some very valid points, although I thought I should clarify my remarks and share with you a precise of my response.
The question arose around my remark that “the general consensus is that fixed rates are as cheap as they are likely to get”, therefore those at higher LTV’s should be looking to fix now.
The world is full of opinions, and especially in these times they vary dramatically, but it does not mean that an opinion is wrong just because you happen to disagree with it.
I am an independent mortgage and financial adviser, I am not just a salesman and I like to think I understand my industry which I have been a part of since the early ’90’s.
My honest opinion, shared by many and disputed by many, is that fixed rates are indeed as low as they are likely to go. Bank Base is not going down any further and lender margins at present dictate that unless competition dramatically changes lenders will not want to reduce their rates further.
My point is generally aimed at those who took out mortgages a couple of years ago at 75% LTV or above. Are the rates going to be that much better in the near future, or is the downside of a potential rate hike in 12 months time a greater risk? Property prices will probably take much longer to recover, and lenders much longer to get competitive again at 90%+ LTV, than it will take for rates to go up.
So if you can fix at historically low and affordable rates now, or risk not being able to remortgage at all in the near future because your LTV has increased beyond lenders acceptable levels due to falls in house prices, why would you not?
Why leave yourself at the mercy of a lenders variable rate which, let’s face it, they will be quick to raise as soon as they can, meaning that mortgage payments will go from being affordable to being uncomfortable?
My job is to put those questions out there for people to discuss, I don’t mind if people disagree with me, and I have evidently succeeded if blogs like this continue to raise issues.
A journalists job is to present a story from a source and to provide comments around it. Exactly like this blogger has done, albeit just presenting one argument.
If it relates to mortgages and property why would you not get a comment from someone who works in that industry?
Seriously, all comments are welcome, blogging like this is a very valuable tool and it would be great if more people offered their opinions like this.