Paragon Mortgages’ latest Financial Advisor Confidence Tracking (FACT) Index reveals a mortgage market growing in Q4 2015, with confidence among financial advisors at the highest levels seen since the onset of the financial crisis.
Q4 2015 saw a sharp increase in the average number of mortgages being introduced per financial advisors office, from 22.7 to 25.2 – an 11% increase that puts current business volumes at their highest since 2008. Average mortgage volumes per advisor also increased from an average of eight mortgages per month, to 8.3.
The overall mix of business being processed by financial advisors also remained largely stable in Q4 2015. There was however, an increase in the volume of remortgage business from 33% to 35%.
Q4 also saw the preference for fixed rate products grow for the fourth consecutive quarter with mortgage advisers recommending a fixed rate product to more than eight out of every ten customers, reflecting a prudent and cautious approach despite concerns easing over an imminent increase in base rates. Of these products nearly half (48.1%) were fixed for two years, while around a third (33.1%) were fixed for five years.
Despite the strength of the market and high levels of confidence overall, financial advisers are cautious about the outlook, with policy changes around buy-to-let driving some negative sentiment.
John Heron, Director of Paragon Mortgages, said...
The latest in our long-running FACT series paints a positive picture of the mortgage market with business volumes up across the board and an overall confidence score the highest it has been since 2008. Looking forward an overwhelming majority of financial advisers expect business to either grow or remain stable over the coming quarter. Advisers have also seen strong growth in buy-to-let in recent months but it is no surprise that they expect the market to cool a little going forward given the policies being adopted by the government.