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Mortgage searches on the rise as second lockdown began

Twenty7Tec has released figures on the state of the mortgage market one week after the second UK lockdown began.

The findings showed that weekly mortgage search volumes are currently at 87.79% of the year’s highest figure, up 6.8% on the week before.

Weekly buy-to-let (BTL) mortgage search volumes are at 92.09% of the year’s high, up 8.0% on last week.

Weekly residential mortgage search volumes are at 87.56% of the year’s high, up 6.8% on last week.

In regard to ESIS documents, weekly mortgage ESIS documentation figures are currently at 91.42% of the year’s highest figure, up 7.5% on the week before.

Weekly BTL mortgage ESIS documentation figures are currently at 89.75% of the year’s highest figure, up 7.8% on the week before.

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Weekly residential mortgage ESIS documentation figures are currently at 90.13% of the year’s highest figure, up 7.4% on the week before.

James Tucker, chief executive of Twenty7Tec, said: “Each time we go into a lockdown, regional or national, there is a drop-off in the volume of mortgage searches that takes place, and also a drop-off in the number of ESIS documents prepared.

“The dip in volumes actually happens in the few days before the lockdown begins as customers focus on dealing with the practical elements of a lockdown.

“Then, immediately as the lockdown starts, mortgage search volumes begin to rise again.

“We’ve seen it again and again this year on a UK-wide, home nation and regional level before and just after we enter lockdown.

Read about the UK Housing Market via our Specialist Residential & Buy to Let Division

“Any drop is then is consistently mirrored by a spike of mortgage search volumes within a day or two of the lockdown beginning.

“There was a definite blip in activity last week as people mentally prepared for lockdown 2.0.

“For context, last week’s drops were less than we’d expect in a bank holiday week.

“In lockdown 2.0, we are still seeing search volumes higher than we did in pre-lockdown Spring.

“That feels like a world away now, but was, at the time, incredibly busy for all our clients.

“BTL currently forms 19.11% of all searches in the past week and 20.87% of all documents prepared against in the past week.

“BTL searches volumes have been relatively steady all year and those searches are converted into ESIS documents more often than residential searches.”

By Jessica Nangle

Source: Mortgage Introducer

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Recovery: Mortgage market activity in July branded ‘astonishing’

Mortgage searches for loans of more than £500,000 increased in July but buy-to-let demand dropped off as the month ended.

That’s according to the latest data from mortgage technology provider Twenty7Tec which has described the market recovery seen in July as ‘astonishing’.

In its monthly report on supply and demand it revealed there were three times as many broker searches for purchase mortgages in July than in May.

The largest rise, it found, was in the £500,000 to £1 million region – an increase driven by the stamp duty savings buyers could make on these properties.

However, there was also an increase in first-time buyer queries, with searches rising from 13% in May to 19% in July. Searches were regularly hitting 10,000 per day and the top ten busiest days for first-time buyer mortgage searches this year were all in July.

However, there was some concern over buy-to-let. Although searches for this sector were up by nearly 30% at the end of the month the seven-day rolling average fell to levels seen at the beginning of the month.

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James Tucker, CEO of Twenty7Tec suggested this could be ‘blip’ following the prime ministers tightening of rules nationwide. But he said it would be interesting to watch what happens over the next few days as it could also be a pre-cursor to what we might expect over the coming months.

Product demand and supply

Product availability also dropped off slightly in July compared to June, despite the increasing demand.

At the maximum loan-to-value points of 70% and 75% Twenty7Tec noticed product volumes drop by 14% and 10% respectively.

Discussing the report in general, Tucker added: “July has been the busiest month of 2020 for mortgage searches.

“This is not a sentence that I was expecting to write less than a month ago. For our business, and indeed for our customers, the speed of the recovery of activity in the mortgage market has been truly astonishing.

“This is not a time to be complacent however – the positive momentum that we have all found both in business volumes and in the speed of technological change should not be lost.”

By Kate Saines

Source: Mortgage Finance Gazette

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Stamp duty freeze leads to ‘busiest’ week for mortgage searches

The week following the stamp duty holiday announcement has been the busiest for mortgage searches all year, according to mortgage technology provider Twenty7Tec.

Yesterday (Tuesday 14 July) experienced the greatest number of searches in the year to date, highlighting how much of an impact the chancellor’s announcement to cut stamp duty has made on the market.

There was also a flurry of activity in the buy-to-let sector which had not been experienced since February. Twenty7Tec reported this week has been the busiest for buy-to-let searches, according to its platform’s data.

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Today marks exactly one week since chancellor Rishi Sunak announced he was freezing stamp duty on properties worth up to £500,000 until March 2021.

Phil Bailey, Sales Director at Twenty7Tec said: “Since the stamp duty announcement last week, the market has really hit its stride.

“The last seven days have been the busiest for mortgage searches all year and we’re handling increased volumes of searches each day. Yesterday was the busiest day of the year, closely followed by the day before. Yesterday’s residential mortgage searches were triple the volumes in lockdown.

“Buy-to-let has definitely pushed on and the past few days have been the busiest since the first couple of weeks in February.

“Our sense is that buy-to-let will increase further as the products are there for that part of the market and the risk profile of buy-to-let is still attractive to lenders.”

By Kate Saines

Source: Mortgage Finance Gazette

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Property market rebounds as mortgage searches surge

Mortgage searches exceeded one million for the first time since lockdown began, according to data from Twenty7Tec as the property market bounced back.

Figures from the mortgage technology provider showed mortgage searches reached 1,174,659 in June, up from 683,078 in May.

 PurchaseRemortgageSearches
June searches749,423425,2361,174,659
May searches324,676358,402683,078

Searches for purchase mortgages made up the majority of activity last month at 63.8 per cent, while remortgage searches accounted for the remaining 36.19 per cent.

This marked a contrast from May, when remortgage searches constituted the majority of searches at 52.47 per cent, with purchase searches making up the remainder (47.53 per cent).

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Estimated HM Revenue & Customs figures for May showed a 50 per cent drop in the number of residential property transactions year-on-year.

The property market was effectively closed for seven weeks during lockdown until May 13, when the government published guidance whereby anyone in England could move home again.

Phil Bailey, sales director at Twenty7Tec, said: “Remortgages were almost the only game in town during lockdown, at one point representing 75 per cent of the total mortgage searches”.

The data also showed a “mismatch” between the demand and supply of high loan-to-value mortgages. One in six (16.4 per cent) of all searches were for products at 90 and 95 per cent LTV, which made up only 2.5 per cent of the market in June.

Last month lenders temporarily withdrew products at 90 per cent LTV to protect service after high demand.

Some have resumed lending at 90 per cent LTV, albeit with a limited offering. Accord Mortgages relaunched with two five-year fixed deals in the week after its withdrawal, but exclusively to first-time buyers.

Commenting on the difference between demand and supply of high LTV mortgages, Mr Bailey said: “That’s going to prove tempting to some lenders who are willing to write business and take a risk.

“Perhaps it will be late summer until the furlough schemes are withdrawn and a clearer economic picture becomes available, but it will happen.”

By Chloe Cheung

Source: FT Adviser