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I am a Partner with 20 years' experience in property, specialising in high value residential sales, acquisitions and lending, focusing on the London and South-East property markets. I was previously a professional rugby player, representing Gloucester, Bristol, Coventry and Newbury.
“Currently, the advice and options available to older borrowers are limited and are inadequate for the needs of an older demographic. Instead of being able to enjoy the fruits of their labour in retirement by for instance purchasing holiday homes or buy-to-lets, older borrowers are faced with an inflexible market that takes into account outdated ideas of what constitutes ‘old age’.
“From a family perspective, those wishing to help out their children in the difficult housing market situation by acting as guarantors on a residential mortgage their child wishes to take out may also find their age being considered as a factor against them, dependent on the lender’s criteria. As pressure increases to help out the younger generation who receive less support from the government and lenders, the ‘Bank of Mum and Dad’ phenomenon will only grow.
“The fact that advice for later life borrowers focuses on lifetime mortgages is clearly ineffective for the market. Change in such a huge industry will always be slow and mortgage lenders will need to ensure responsible borrowing, but if more choice and flexibility was made available to older borrowers and fundamental changes were made to the idea of what determines an ‘older borrower’, this fruitful part of the lending market could reach criteria that suit both lender and borrower.”
Brexit will potentially have a huge impact on the people who work in the UK’s financial services industries. Many banks, insurers and fund managers who have large businesses in continental Europe could consider relocating to Paris or Frankfurt, and senior staff will either lose their roles or have to move to another country. Some global investment banks, such as JPMorgan, have said that Brexit would lead to a significant loss of jobs in the UK.
“The impending EU referendum has certainly put the brakes on the prime central London property market. Uncertainty creates nervousness and therefore both buyers and sellers are holding fire until the outcome of the vote is known.
“The Brexit effect means demand is subdued even where asking prices have fallen. Two stamp duty increases within the last 18 months have already had an adverse impact on this specific market.
“However, there are indications that underlying demand is strengthening, as asking prices are being reduced to reflect higher transaction costs.
“High levels of viewings would also suggest that buyers are keen to make purchases but are just holding fire until they know what the future of Britain’s place within the EU will be.”
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