2017 has been a trying year for the buy-to-let mortgage market, which has been faced with not only several regulation changes, but also last month’s base rate rise.
In fact, the latest research from Moneyfacts.co.uk shows that, since the base rate announcement on 2nd November, the average two-year tracker buy-to-let mortgage rate has risen by 0.20% to stand at 2.43% today – above December 2016’s 2.40%.
The average two-year fixed buy-to-let mortgage rate has also risen since the announcement, from 2.89% to 2.93%, but is down on last year’s 3.01%.
The Finance Expert at Moneyfacts, Charlotte Nelson, comments on the figures: “Just one month after the Bank of England’s rate rise announcement, it’s clear to see from the latest statistics that the average two-year tracker buy-to-let mortgage has factored in the base rate increase. Rates have turned around from the record low of 2.23% in November, with the largest monthly rise that has ever been seen on moneyfacts.co.uk records.
“Variable rates are designed to track base rate, so an increase to the two-year tracker rate is little surprise. However, not only has the average variable tracker rate increased, so too has the average two-year fixed rate, seeing rates bound upwards and nearing June 2017 levels, with the highest monthly rise since April 2015.”
She continues: “The combination of the change in portfolio criteria lenders had to put in place earlier this year, rising swap rates in the run-up to the announcement on 2nd November and the base rate rise itself has proved a lethal cocktail for fixed rate buy-to-let mortgages, with all this pressure leaving providers little choice but to review their range.
“The criteria changes for portfolio landlords, and the rising fixed and variable tracker rates will start to eat into the returns of landlords, making many consider whether buy-to-let is still the right option for them. With rates on the rise, it is important that buy-to-let landlords weigh up their options carefully.”
Nelson believes: “Given that savings rates remain low, property is still seen as a good option by many, and the lure of a higher return will continue to see many potential landlords wanting to dip their toe into the buy-to-let waters. As rates keep rising on buy-to-let deals, borrowers will need to act fast if they still want to get a low rate. Anyone who is unsure should seek the advice of a financial adviser.”