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Number of mortgage deals back to pre-pandemic levels

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The number of mortgage products on the market are back at pre-pandemic levels after hundreds were pulled due to the economic uncertainty of last year.

There are now 2,488 fixed rate mortgage deals available, just over the 2,479 on offer in March 2020, according to analysis by Defaqto.

Product numbers plummeted during the pandemic, with just 1,390 loans available in April last year.

First-time buyer deals were hit hardest, falling from 849 in March 2020 to just 455 in April 2020. Almost all 95 per cent and 90 per cent loan-to-value (LTV) offers were pulled from the market.

There are now more products available for those looking for a fixed rate at 80 per cent and 85 per cent LTV now than there were before the pandemic.

This is good news for those who are re-mortgaging and first-time buyers with larger deposits, Defaqto said.

The higher LTV products at 90 per cent and 95 per cent LTV are returning to the market but are still nowhere near the levels they were before the pandemic, according to the data.

Another bonus for borrowers with larger deposits is that several lenders have recently launched new fixed rate products at less than 1 per cent.

Ten providers have recently launched 2-year fixed products below 1 per cent. They are: Barclays, Cumberland BS, HSBC, Lloyds, Nationwide BS, Natwest, Platform, Royal Bank of Scotland, Santander and TSB. They are offering rates between 0.91 per cent and 0.99 per cent. Nationwide has also launched 3 and 5 year fixed rates at sub-1 per cent.

Katie Brain, consumer banking expert at Defaqto, said: “It is great to see so many mortgage products available to borrowers. Many who were looking to move last year had to put their plans on hold during the pandemic as loans disappeared from the market. First time buyers were hit hardest as the small deposit mortgages were all withdrawn. This part of the market still has yet to recover but overall the number of fixed rate products is back to pre-pandemic levels. This is good news for borrowers as more mortgages means more choice.”

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