Halifax and NatWest make further fixed rate mortgage cuts

Halifax and NatWest have announced the next in a series of fixed rate cuts this afternoon (27th November).

NatWest introduced a 2-year fixed remortgage from 4.87% with a £1,495 fee and a 5.64% 5-year fixed with no fee for a purchase at 95% loan-to-value (LTV).

Halifax took up to 0.72% off a number of its deals.

Even with swap rates increasing slightly in the past few days, lenders appear to be ready to shave their margins in an effort to secure business and boost activity.

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Ken James, director at Contractor Mortgage Services:

“Once more into the breach the UK’s banks go.

“The rate war drum is now becoming louder by the day. Rates are coming down around our ears, which for borrowers is fantastic news as long as they have not passed the point of no return in their mortgage process.

“After rate cuts from Barclays that will take effect from Tuesday, we now have Halifax and Natwest announcing reductions.

“There is a real frenzy among lenders fighting for every scrap of business they can get as they head towards the end of the year.

“I am getting calls and emails daily from clients understandably asking me to check and double-check to see if they can squeeze an extra bit of savings from the deals already secured. I wonder when the drums will silence.”

Justin Moy, managing director at EHF Mortgages

“Just when you think lenders may have run out of margin to play with, two or three of the big players suddenly dig deeper into their pockets and find some more to give away.

“NatWest have pushed their headline 2-year fixed remortgage deal to 4.87% with either a £995 or £1495 fee for those with 40% equity in their homes, but there is even a reasonably priced 5-year fixed rate at 5.64% for those purchasing with a 5% deposit.

“It’s clear that lenders are desperately trying to fill their application numbers ready for 2024, even if profit margins are being severely squeezed as a result.”

Stephen Perkins, managing director at Yellow Brick Mortgages:

“These are substantial rate reductions from two of the largest mortgage lenders, which are a sign of the growing confidence in the rate forecasts and also an element of fighting hard for the lions share of deals yet to be agreed in 2023.

“With all lenders behind on annual lending targets, there is no doubt a real appetite to ensure they maximise their lending volume before the year comes to a close.”

Gary Boakes, director at Verve Financial:

“Halifax and Natwest have come out with a few early festive treats for customers.

“It is so positive that we are now starting to see regular rate reductions and, with 2023 coming to a close, lenders are looking to start 2024 on the front foot.”

David Stirling, independent financial adviser at Mint Mortgages & Protection:

“How festive of the lenders to start snowballing their rate cuts as we dip into December.

“Although it is traditionally a quiet time of year, any movements south on rates can only be welcomed.

“Hopefully this trend will carry on into 2024 and we see lots more positive market activity.”

Charles Breen, founder and director at Montgomery Financial:

“Further fantastic news for borrowers from two of the big beasts of mortgages today.

“Hopefully, this will further improve consumer sentiment and create the foundations for a brilliant start to the new year.

“The only thing that will throw a spanner in the works is the bank of England if they raise rates at the next meeting because they can’t see the wood from the trees.

“We are currently seeing an active and sustained decrease in rates, and while they are not seismic in size they are consistent and sustained and over the next few months should lead to a considerable reduction and saving for purchasers as well as remortgage clients.”

Gareth Davies, director at South Coast Mortgage Services:

“It’s great to see these rate reductions coming on such a regular basis and can only be a positive sign.”

Steven Hargreaves, mortgage and protection adviser at The Mortgage Co:

“Does the latest round of cuts question the margins lenders were making on their fixed-rate mortgages?

“We have seen cut after cut in the past couple of months when swap rates have only reduced slightly however when rates increased in June we were told this was a direct result of swap rates increasing.

“Maybe lenders cutting margins is the sign buyers need to see. It can only be good news for existing borrowers with deals coming to an end, and new borrowers coming into the market.”