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Borrowers look to switch loans ahead of rate rise

Borrowers are increasingly looking to switch their mortgage to take advantage of better deals in anticipation of an increase in rates in the coming months, according to Legal & General.

Its research found that 17 per cent of borrowers intend to move their mortgage in the next year compared with 13 per cent in October 2001.

The number of borrowers expecting interest rate rises has almost doubled to 63 per cent from 34 per cent last October.

Borrowers are confident of property continuing to increase in value, with 73 per cent believing prices will rise compared with 37 per cent last year. One in five view their home purely as an investment and another fifth see it both as a home and investment.

BMRB carried out the research in April in a sample of 940 homeowners.

L&G director of housing marketing Stephen Smith says: “These results point to a modest upswing in the level of remortgaging in the second half of 2002. Consumers are beginning to seek out the better deals. It is not just a case of remortgaging once during the life of a mortgage – more and more people are realising the benefits of reviewing their mortgage arrangements regularly. It can be a simple process to secure an ever better deal and reduce monthly mortgage payments or to swap to a mortgage more suited to a change in family circumstances.”

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