- Santander mortgage review - Which?
- Family told by Santander they can’t buy a SMALLER house with cheaper mortgage
- If you don't ask … the secret remortgage rates for special customers
Santander mortgage review - Which?
At least, that's the message some of the UK's biggest banks are sending out to mortgage borrowers. Guardian Money has found that several banks and building societies are privately offering bespoke mortgage deals to certain existing customers, giving them lower fees and rates than those they are publicly advertising.
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The most covert is HSBC and its sister bank First Direct, both of which advertise a range of mortgage deals for existing customers on their websites, but keep their best deals secret. The offers always top the deals being advertised online, including any already discounted for existing customers. Even when it comes to its market-leading two-year fixed rate of 1. These deals are not advertised because "it isn't a one size fits all policy", according to spokesman James Thorpe. Thorpe adds that at the moment existing customers who hold a current account with the group will always be able to "pay less" for a mortgage than borrowers who don't.
Family told by Santander they can’t buy a SMALLER house with cheaper mortgage
This will "most likely make a difference, as we will have a better indication of [a customer's] creditworthiness," Thorpe says. All customers who are interested in these bespoke deals apparently need to do is to "call up and ask" if there are any unadvertised rates or discounts they can "access" as an existing customer, he says.
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HSBC says its approach is far from unique and that "most banks employ a retention pricing strategy". But the Council of Mortgage Lenders CML says that only "a minority" of lenders offer unpublicised, bespoke deals to borrowers.
If you don't ask … the secret remortgage rates for special customers
The strategy is common among lenders in the United States, according to John Charcol broker Ray Boulger, and could become more widespread on this side of the Atlantic as lenders upgrade their technology. So which other lenders are willing to negotiate rates? I had three clients call me bemused as to why they were receiving this letter from Santander. Customers are told that if they act before 21 November, they will not pay early repayment charges for exiting their existing deal.
He said the bank was attempting to steal clients which it would be otherwise unaware of, if they had not been introduced by the broker. The option to contact your Independent Financial Adviser, left out of this section, is placed at the bottom of the letter. Choose your subscription.
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