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Public confident of mortgage market

Borrowers are more confident about the mortgage market than financial advisers, according to Paragon&#39s latest Financial Adviser Confidence Tracking index.


The survey found that the amount of mortgage business written has stayed constant over the last 12 months but the index fell to 102.8 in the last quarter of last year compared with 113.9 in the first quarter.


Paragon says this shows a clear pattern of continued consumer confidence in the housing market despite a drop in advisers&#39 confidence.


The index surveys more than 200 financial advisers every quarter for the amount of mortgage business arranged in the previous quarter and the expected levels of business in the quarter to come.


It revealed that the amount of discount mortgages introduced by brokers in the first quarter of this year increased to 33 per cent compared with 18 per cent in the last quarter of 1998.


Paragon says this increase is at the expense of capped and fixed-rate mortgages.


The number of people taking out endowment mortgages in the last six months has dropped from 45 per cent of borrowers to 38 per cent.


The number of people remortgaging increased from 37 per cent to 47 per cent in the last six months.


Paragon Mortgages man- aging director John Heron says: “On the surface, the signals have been confused. With the sudden rise in discount mortgages, consumers obviously believe that inter est rates are on their way down.”

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