A homebuyer’s guide to navigating changing mortgage rates

Mortgage interest rates are falling, which is good news, but fluctuations in the recent past can feel a bit unsettling. So, let’s take a look at some of the things you can do to help insulate against changing interest rates. 
You may be able to move without changing your mortgage 
If you want to move home and take your existing, cheaper-than-currently-available mortgage rate with you, then porting your mortgage is ideal. Porting your mortgage allows you to move to your next home with your current mortgage. You may also be able to borrow more in addition, but it’s important to remember that each mortgage provider will offer different terms.  
Fix your mortgage interest rate 
Variable interest rates tend to be higher than a fixed rate and many people prefer the stability and predictability of fixed-rate mortgages. However, if the variable rates fall below current fixed rates, then you save. This tends to happen when interest rates are very low. If you are planning on keeping your current property for a short period, you may choose a variable-rate mortgage. But it’s important to remember that there are many mortgage types to choose from. 
Explore different types of mortgages  
There are thousands of mortgage products to choose from, so it’s important not to be complacent when finding the right deal for you. An offset mortgage allows you to reduce the balance on your mortgage by using your savings, which means you pay interest on a lower balance, reducing your payments. Guarantor mortgages and 5% deposit mortgages help you take your first or next step on the ladder, while interest-only mortgages can work particularly well for buy-to-let investors. 
Talk to a good mortgage advisor    
Having a larger deposit also leads to paying less interest. The expertise and guidance of a good mortgage advisor will give you extra levels of confidence when you are applying for a mortgage. Whether you use your agent’s in-house mortgage advisor or already know the ideal person, a quick chat with them can save you a lot of time and money. Having a strategy in place to safeguard your investment against the unforeseen gives a lot of reassurance and a plan to fall back on.  
Higher mortgage rates can lead to a better deal  
When mortgage rates decrease, property prices tend to increase due to higher demand. Therefore, the cost of higher mortgage rates set against the lower purchase price of your property means that waiting for interest rates to fall will not necessarily lower your mortgage repayments. Fluctuations in mortgage rates are nothing to worry about in a stable market and can lead to better deals. Buying the right property also plays a big part in securing your future as you negotiate your offer price. A market that is paced at a civilised level without frantic competition is also a more pleasant environment in which to buy. 
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