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In the last month or so the main problem with mortgage applications has not been the client meeting new criteria but instead it’s been a case of the proposed property falling foul of the valuer. Valuers are having trouble confirming the recent increases in house values & have been “prudent” with their figures. We have seen surveyors’ down-value a property by up to £40000 on a £220000 property. We have made an application on a £420000 property and had one surveying company down-value to £360000 and another state the value as £410000. In another instance, a property we thought was greatly over-valued for remortgage purposes went straight through without question.
After what has seemed like a lengthy wait, the Home Office has announced the pilot region for the landlord immigration check requirements under the Immigration Act 2014. The initial areas will be Birmingham, Walsall, Sandwell, Dudley and Wolverhampton. The requirement will come in to force in those areas only on 1 December 2014, with other towns and regions to follow at unspecified dates in 2015.
When the UK economy finally returned to its pre-financial crisis growth level this summer, Chancellor George Osborne was in receipt of other news that perhaps only he welcomed: Inheritance Tax (IHT) bills of £3.4 billion had almost touched levels last seen in 2008. Households paid more in IHT last year than at any point since the start of the recession. HM Revenue & Customs’ (HMRC) receipts from IHT increased by 8.6% over the last year as 15,976 estates were caught by the tax.
A ten minute browse through any of the Landlord or Buy-to-Let property magazines will usually reveal at least one story where a rogue landlord has been fined for failing to protect the safety of his or her tenants. It seems these articles increasingly relate to Houses of Multiple Occupation or HMOs.
This article was kindly contributed to Pace Plc by Paul Flavin, of Zing Money. An estimated 285,000 (1) mortgage customers will experience an increase in their monthly mortgage repayments between August 2014 - December 2014 when their current mortgage deal expires. A large volume of these mortgage customers will revert from their existing pay rates between 3% & 4%, moving onto an average Standard Variable Rate (SVR) of 4.4% (2). Based on a mortgage of £150000 over a term of 25 years, this could mean an increase in mortgage payments of £114 per month.

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