Homeowners still opting to stay on SVR

Standard variable rate mortgages are still the preferred option for borrowers with 37% of homeowners opting to stay on their SVR, rising from 35% from January 2011.

The average rate homeowners would be prepared to fix at is now just 3.4%, dropping from 4.0% in January 2009, while 46% of homeowners haven’t reviewed their mortgage at all since March 2009 when the base rate first hit 0.5%.

A further 16% believe the base rate is so low they do not need to worry about reviewing.

Unbiased.co.uk says with fixed rates falling below 5% for the first time in decades and the threat of future interest rate rises becoming more real, homeowners are potentially missing out on the best fixed rate deals. 

Fixed rate mortgages do remain popular with 18-34 year olds, where 44% currently have one, a rise of 6% from 38% in January 2011.  

Karen Barrett, chief executive of unbiased.co.uk, says: “With the base rate now remaining at a record low of 0.5% for 31 months, our tracked research shows that homeowners could be missing out on the opportunity to bag some record fixed rate deals.  

“Once rates begin to rise so will the price of fixed rates, meaning that now could well be the perfect time review their mortgage finances and move to guard against the potential of increased payments in the future.”