Five-year fixed rates buck trend

Five-year fixed rate mortgage deals have increased ten fold since April 2007, according to financial website Moneysupermarket.com.

Three years ago there were just 39 five-year fixed rate mortgage deals compared to 411 now.

During the same period two-year fixed rate deals have fallen from 3,767 to 612 while three-year fixed rate products have plummeted from 2,398 to 449.

Hannah Mercedes Skenfield, mortgages channel manager at Moneysupermarket.com, says: “It is interesting that, whilst all other mortgage types have fallen off a cliff, the number of five-year fixed rate deals has actually increased.

She adds: “Everyone knows that the only way rates can go is up, but five years is a big bet to place.”

Moneysupermarket.com research claims five-year fixed rate deals carry a higher rate than three years ago with the average standing at 5.82% today and 5.72% in 2007.

But the margins over the base rate have rocketed from 0.49% to 5.32% in the same period.

Skenfield, says: “Base rate is likely to increase back to normal levels in five years; therefore the chances of benefiting in the longer term are high. If you are comfortable locking into a deal for five years then now is a good time as any.”

Meanwhile the wider industry is operating at just 12% the number of mortgages compared with April 2007 levels, claims Moneysupermarket.com.

David Hollingworth, mortgage specialist at London and Country, says: “Perhaps the increase in five-year fixed term deals is just a reflection of where the market is at and where borrowers interest will lie.

“There will a lot of people mulling over whether to take a longer or medium term deals to gain some security.

“Those people will also be considering the fixed term rates rather than the shorter terms we have seen in the past.”