Cartel survey reveals uncertainty in housing market

The summer of 2004 has left consumers wary and looking for professional advice, says Cartel

In a nationwide consumer survey carried out by leading UK mortgage intermediary Cartel, as many as 30% of respondents say they firmly believe that a housing crash is imminent.

While analysts and industry experts fill the newspapers with strong arguments for and against this likelihood, the five thousand respondents to the Cartel survey represent the beliefs of the general public, both those buying homes and those remortgaging their existing homes.

77% are also convinced that interest rates will continue to rise throughout the rest of this year.

Carl Wright, managing director at Cartel, says: “This news comes as no surprise.

“While estate agents and those selling their homes share these worries about the market, we are working hard to reassure our customers that the news is not all bad.

“We must not forget that most experts still do not forecast a housing crash, and 705 of our respondents would agree with that.

“But even while there is uncertainty, people need professional reassurance much more than in more stable financial climates.

“A large part of our business is remortgaging, and of course while this uncertainty reigns, companies in our position are experiencing high demand from those seeking the best possible deal and to protect
their investment.”

Wright’s opinions are supported by the fact that 55% say they believe more individuals will remortgage or consider remortgaging over the next 12 months, due to the rising interest rates.

Wright adds: “If more people are motivated to consider
remortgaging as a result of the interest rates, this can only be a good thing, not only for us in the business, but for the thousands of homeowners who are paying over the odds for their mortgages because they are not well enough informed to seek a better deal.”