Half of homeowners face rate rise struggle

A YouGov survey commissioned by the credit agency found that many homeowners fear a sudden increase, which could stifle their ability to pay their mortgage

Homeowners in the East Midlands are most negative about coping with a rate rise, while those in the West Midlands are most positive.

Andrew Webb, sales and marketing director of Equifax Personal Solutions, said: “The issue that many homeowners are currently facing is the uncertainty surrounding interest rates.

“When asked how much a potential rise of 1% would affect their monthly mortgage repayment, 40% of homeowners did not know, with those living in Wales the least certain at 57%.

“While a third of the homeowners we surveyed are currently protected by a fixed rate mortgage, many are already thinking about how they can prepare for any rise that occurs before their fixed rate deal ends.

“For these individuals, an early review of their financial commitments could help them to prepare for a future mortgage application.”

Missed payments can indicate a lack of responsibility in repaying debts during affordability assessments, while even dormant or unused credit accounts can impact offers that lenders make.

Webb added: “Homeowners looking to apply for a new mortgage as part of that process should be aware that their current financial behaviour could impact their ability to get the mortgage they want.

“We suggest anyone planning to apply for a new mortgage or remortgage in the next six to 12 months keeps track of their current financial commitments and regularly checks their credit report to ensure that it remains accurate and up to date.”