2022 mortgage outlook: Consumer demand likely to remain high
Despite the Bank of England going ahead with plans to raise interest rates, the UK mortgage market remains robust, recently buoyed further by signs the Omicron variant won’t lead to another lockdown.
Having already successfully adapted to lockdown and social distancing, I am confident that UK mortgage advisers will continue to show flexibility and resilience to respond to any further challenges.
Interest rates aside, there’s little to suggest a material shift away from last year’s high transaction levels and market size. With fears of recession and unemployment fading, and billions in lockdown savings still yet to enter the economy, a dip in consumer demand for homes looks unlikely.
I expect the lack of housing supply seen in recent years to continue to be a limiting factor. However, this is likely to be amplified by people becoming clearer on what they want from their home. Hybrid working has changed people’s housing priorities, with many looking to move away from crowded cities and into bigger ‘countryside’ homes from which they can commute when required.
The important role advisers play has been highlighted more than ever in recent years, with lenders continuing to value their support in distributing products, ability to quickly adjust to changing customer needs and the important customer verification data they provide.
Moving forward, the Covid legacies of furlough and payment holidays will bring further complexity to the financial circumstances of customers. Understanding their needs and navigating the market to find the right solution for them will further highlight the value of mortgage brokers for both customers and lenders.
As we move into the new year, I expect to see a continued buoyant market, one not penned in by the stresses of stamp duty deadlines. Advisers have proven their ability to quickly adapt to seismic change and are therefore well placed to continue to provide important support to customers in what is hopefully becoming a post-Covid world.