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Significant increase in fee-free mortgages

More than a third of fixed rate mortgage deals currently on the market are now offered without an arrangement fee, fresh research from Moneyfacts.co.uk shows.

The study reveals that the number of fixed-rate deals without an arrangement fee has more than doubled over the past 12 months, from 556 deals to 1,162 deals this week.


A Year Ago


6 Months Ago


Number of fee-free fixed rate deals




Number of fixed rate mortgages




Source: Moneyfacts.co.uk


Compiled: 29.11.16

“It’s great news that the number of fixed rate deals without a fee has increased by a staggering 606 products. With more deals now than ever offering a no-fee option, it is clear to see that lenders are trying to compete in ways beyond just the headline rate,” said Charlotte Nelson, finance expert at Moneyfacts.co.uk.

But while the number of fixed rate deals with no fee has increased, the average fixed rate fee has increased too, rising from £954 to £984 over one year, giving the impression that products that charge a fee are disproportionately more expensive. This is mainly an attempt by providers to compensate some of their low rate deals with a higher fee, particularly as the average two-year fixed rate has fallen from 2.67% to 2.34% in the last 12 months, according to Nelson.

She added: “Too many borrowers focus their attention on achieving the lowest rate possible and miss out on some of the deals that end up being the most cost-effective. For example, borrowers opting for the lowest two-year fixed rate deal at 75% loan-to-value would be £1,072 worse off compared to a borrower who opted for the lowest deal with no fee.

“Fees can soon mount up, particularly if a borrower opts for a two-year deal and remortgages after the deal expires. This can make ignoring fee-free options a costly mistake, as the amount paid on the fee could instead be better spent overpaying the mortgage.

“It is important that borrowers looking for a mortgage ensure they do their homework and work out the true cost of a deal, looking at the rate, fee and any incentive package, so they can be sure they have found the most cost-effective option.”


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