Inflation highs “further squeeze household disposable incomes”

Office for National Statistics (ONS) data has revealed the Consumer Prices Index, including owner-occupiers’ housing costs (CPIH), rose by 4.8% in the 12 months to December 2021, up from 4.6% in the 12 months to November.

Meanwhile, 11% of UK homeowners would not know where to begin when it comes to remortgaging, according to Martijn van der Heijden, chief financial officer at Habito.

van der Heijden also said that half (47%) of homeowners would consider remortgaging to a cheaper interest deal in the next six months to save money.

He said: “All eyes are now on the Bank of England’s meeting next month, to see whether they believe another interest rate rise is in order to curb inflation.

“However, increased interest rates, combined with rising energy costs could further squeeze household disposable incomes.

“For any homeowners on a variable rate or standard variable rate deal, we think now’s the time to consider whether fixing their mortgage rate is right for them.”

van der Heijden explained that at Habito, 51% of customers now want a 5-year fixed rate deal. This compares to 38% after a 2-year fix rate, a fall from 49% in January 2021.

He added that 98% of all Habito customers choose a fixed-term deal, over a variable one.

“The good news is that the mortgage market has changed since we were last in a rising inflation environment.

“We’ve seen much more mortgage innovation in the creation of longer-term fixes or whole of term products, designed precisely to protect consumers from interest rate risk,” said van der Heijden.

Research conducted by Habito also found that one in five (20%) homeowners said they would consider fixing for 10+ years to avoid having to remortgage again.

Written by: Houseladder