Remortgaging volumes hit an eight-year high in July, conveyancing service provider, LMS has found.
But while transaction levels hit their highest point since September 2009 on a 12-month rolling average, they remain some way off their pre-crash highs.
Loan amounts are also on the up, reaching an all-time high of £171,421 in July.
Nick Chadbourne, chief executive of LMS, said: “Remortgaging volumes have been on an upward trend since the beginning of 2015 and the current 12-month rolling average shows an eight-year high. Growth has been driven by a combination of factors.
“People tracking rates to secure a fixed-rate deal ahead of a potential rate change over the summer, and a flurry of borrowers, correlating with a previous spike in the market.
“Back in the summer of 2016 interest rates hit a record low and people fixed on the rates available at that time on two-year deals. These borrowers are now reaching the end of their current arrangement and are returning to the market.”
Some 83% of borrowers consult a broker when remortgaging, up from 70% in 2017.
The proportion of homeowners remortgaging to reduce their mortgage term fell to 2.3% in July 18, down from 3.2% in July 2017 and 2.9% in June 2016. This percentage has also fallen in recent months, down from 2.4% in May and June 2018.
Despite household incomes climbing back above £48,000 for the first time since August 2017, rising interest rates mean that annual repayments have hit a four-year high – payments haven’t been this high since June 2014 when they hit £9,527.
As a result of this, the percentage of income accounted for by yearly mortgage costs has risen to 19.5%, the highest proportion since January 2016.
With interest rates on the rise, the percentage of those able to lower their rate by remortgaging fell to 77% in July, down from a high of 89% in November 2016.
The typical remortgage loan amount has hit a record high of £171,421 based on a three-month rolling average.
Average LTVs in the North East hit 93% in July; up from 82% in June. The region currently has the lowest typical loan amount, however (£118,923).
While nine regions throught England & Wales have seen LTVs rise, Yorkshire saw LTVs unmoved at 78%.
Remortgagors in the capital are currently only borrowing 65% of their property’s value, although this is up from 60% in June and still equates to £311,331.
London borrowers are also remortgaging most often; every three years and five months.