Mortgage Types

Repayment Mortgage

This is a mortgage in which the capital borrowed is repaid gradually over the period of the loan. The capital is paid in monthly installments together with an amount of interest. The amount of capital which is repaid gradually increases over the years while the amount of interest goes down. Provided you make all your repayments up to the end of the mortgage term, you are guaranteed to clear the full amount borrowed. The majority of residential mortgages are on a repayment basis.

Interest Only Mortgage

With this type of mortgage, you pay interest on the loan in monthly installments to the lender. Instead of repaying the loan each month, you can opt to pay into a long-term investment or savings plan which should grow enough to clear the loan at the end of the mortgage term. However, if your investment doesn’t grow as planned or the property value falls, you will have an equity shortfall to fund at maturity. Opting for an interest- only mortgage whilst reducing servicing payments can therefore involve accepting a significant degree of risk. Buy to let mortgages tend to be on an interest only basis with the loan being paid off with the proceeds of the eventual sale of the property.

Fixed Rates

As the name suggest, the interest rate is set at a certain level for a set period – this is usually two, three or five years, although occasionally longer-term fixed rates are available. During that period your rate is guaranteed not to change. When it comes to an end you will usually move on to your lender’s standard variable rate or (SVR).

Tracker Rates

The rate you pay is attached to another rate, usually the Bank of England base rate. It is a set margin below or above that rate for a set period – for example, 1% above base rate for five years. During that time it moves up and down if the other rate changes. Some trackers track rates set by the lender and some track the London inter-bank offered rate or (LIBOR).

Discount Rates

The interest rate is a set margin below the lender’s SVR for a set period, and during that time it moves up and down as the SVR changes. Discount rates are normally for two or three years.

Offset Mortgages

Your savings will be offset against your outstanding mortgage. Your current account, savings account or both are linked to your mortgage. Each month, the amount in these accounts is offset against your outstanding mortgage before working out the interest you owe. You are unlikely to earn interest on your savings which are offset against your mortgage. Offset mortgages may help some people reduce the term of their mortgage.

Flexible Mortgages

Usually a variable rate mortgage, with flexible features such as allowing overpayments, underpayments and payment holidays.

Your home or other property may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.