Remortgage searches hit record high as product choice dips
The busiest ever day for remortgage searches fell in August 2022, according to data from mortgage platform Twenty7tec.
And for eight of the 31 days last month, searches for remortgages outstripped searches for purchase mortgages.
However, the number of products available dropped by more than 10% – the lowest level of availability since July 2021.
The proportion of first-time buyers in the market also dropped to the lowest level so far this year, the data indicated.
Overall, August was also the third busiest month this year for total mortgage searches, up by more than a fifth from the same period last year.
The data also showed a pick-up in searches for self-employed, green buy-to-let and retired mortgages in August.
Product availability slips
James Tucker, founder and chief executive of Twenty7Tec, said: “The front end of August was among the busiest of months we’ve ever seen.
“The latter half was definitely affected by the summer holidays and by the bank holiday weekend.
“Away from the headline figures, however, it’s a very nuanced market.
“Remortgages and buy-to-let activity were high, but first-time buyer, purchase and £1m+ property searches were all down.
“The major story of the month has to be product availability, including a 26% drop in products with max loan to value of 60% – a key component of the buy-to-let market and a move that surely drove some of the extra search activity.
“Normally, we’d be expecting a back-to-school vibe this week, with the 14 weeks from the beginning of September to the run-up to Christmas being the busiest of the year.
“But if I have learned anything from the past couple of years, it’s that it’s easier to comment on what has come than what is to come.”