Skipton pulls its mortgage products from the market

SKIPTON International has temporarily withdrawn all its mortgages from the Guernsey market.

Pic by Adrian Miller 05-11-20 Generic St Peter Port Town pics Gpweb generic housing rooftops property market residential Victoria Road. (31321051)
Pic by Adrian Miller 05-11-20 Generic St Peter Port Town pics Gpweb generic housing rooftops property market residential Victoria Road. (31321051)

And NatWest International has withdrawn its fixed rate deals.

The announcement came just two days after Skipton’s parent company stopped providing mortgages in the UK.

The local mortgage market has been thrown into disarray this week, with Bank of England rate rises leading to sharp increases in mortgage rates and some being withdrawn.

Skipton International managing director Jim Coupe explained the decision had been made on the basis of current market conditions and in particular the volatility of the swap market – the market used by mortgage lenders to mitigate the interest rate risk in a fixed rate mortgage.

‘We have not taken this decision lightly but have done so in order to avoid further disruption to our customers,’ he said.

‘We are working hard on a new mortgage product range which we will launch in due course. Customers who applied on or before Wednesday 28 September will be eligible for the recently withdrawn mortgage products.’

Pierre Blampied, managing director of mortgage broker SPF, said he was shocked by Skipton’s temporary move out of the Guernsey mortgage market.

‘We didn’t see this coming, and the announcement caught us by surprise,’ he said.

‘We would have loved some notice that this was going to happen but we are in unprecedented territory. We do have sympathy with Skipton’s position. We would expect them to come back with an updated product list next week.’

Skipton is one of only three providers in the Bailiwick, along with NatWest and Butterfield, which provide the specialised mortgages needed for the Guernsey Housing Association's partial ownership properties.

GHA launched its first partial ownership properties in 2007 and over the last 15 years has grown the portfolio to 260 homes.

GHA chief executive Steve Williams heard about the changes yesterday morning and hoped this would be a short-term review by the banks.

The GHA has had a busy year for partial ownership re-sales, with 12 so far in 2022. There have also been new units available in Le Menage in St Martin’s and Longfield in Maurepas Road.

Mr Williams said as house prices had gone up and people had been paying off their mortgages, it had allowed the partial ownership homeowners to build up a lump sum, which they can use as a deposit to go into the private sector.

‘It does take time for people to resell, but we have seen a lot this year and last year.’

He hoped the mortgage market would settle down soon.

. NatWest and Butterfield were contacted for comment.

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