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Halifax rate rise rattles remortgage market

Halifax has effectively pulled out of the remortgage market by drastically

bumping up its fixed and discount rates in a move echoing that of rival

Nationwide.

Halifax, the UK&#39s biggest lender, has heaped increases of nearly 0.5 per

cent on its flagship remortgage products this week, which leaves IFAs with

no option but to recommend deals of more competitive providers.

Borrowers can expect a rate increase on Halifax&#39s fixed-rate loan of 0.4

per cent to 5.75 per cent from 5.35 per cent.

IFAs have interpreted the move as an attempt to head off rate-chasing

remortgage borrowers.

Halifax&#39s decision mirrors similar moves by Nationwide, which withdrew its

most competitive discount loans in February, and Portman Buil-ding Society,

which withdrew from the remortgage market last month.

Charcol senior technical manager Ray Boulger says: “Halifax has removed

itself from the mortgage market by being completely uncompetitive.”

A Halifax spokesman says: “We constantly reprice as part of our strategy

to narrow the gap between what our new and existing borrowers pay. We

believe that we still have a competitive range and are certainly not

shutting up shop.”

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