Deals and discounts for the Manchester area and also Nationwide offers - spread the word!
Most bargains are limited time one day only offers so if you see something you like don't hesitate and buy today!
Remortgaging just means switching your deal to a better one - you don't need to be moving or borrowing more. Now's a great time, as rates are near all-time lows (and many think they'll rise in 2016). Done right, you could start saving pre-Christmas.
Before my 14 tips, to inspire you, here are some tweets we got since we covered this in April.
Craig: "@MartinSLewis. Prompted by your email to remortgage. Saving £2,400 over two years and no fees. #TopResult."
Sarah: "Got a new rate with the same bank, saved £289 a month."
Check your current deal. Here's what you need to know about it.
a. The current rate: And monthly repayment & amount outstanding. b. Type: Is it a fix, tracker, discount or standard variable rate (SVR)? c. Deal deadline: If it's a short-term deal (eg, 2yr fix), when it ends. d. Term: How long it is, eg, 25yrs, and when it must be fully repaid by. e. Penalties: Are there early repayment or exit penalties?
Crucially find your CURRENT loan-to-value (LTV) - the proportion of the value you're borrowing, £80k on a £100k property is 80% LTV. For each 5% lower your LTV, until 60%, the cheaper the deal.
So if your home has increased in value since you got your mortgage, you may gain. See LTV Help for full info.
FREE 60-page Remortgaging Booklet. A mortgage is most people's biggest expenditure, and just because you've done it once, doesn't mean it's the same this time around. Ensure you know what you're doing. My fully updated guide takes you through it step-by-step. As Katie kindly tweeted: "Fixed rates so low. Excellent #Remortgage Guide from @MoneySavingExp."
Are you on your lender's SVR? Beware, you can likely save - especially if you're one of the circa 50% of mortgage holders on an SVR, the go-to-rate after a deal ends. Remortgage deals can be 3.15 percentage points cheaper - saving £2,900/yr on a £150k mortgage.
To highlight how much you could be paying, here are some major lenders' current SVRs, which now average about 4.3%, (see SVR Help for more):
(1) Fee spread across deal period + repayments, assumes 25yr term.
A tool to factor in fees to see each mortgage's true cost. The smaller your mortgage (especially if sub-£100k), the bigger the impact of fees. To assess, spread fees over the fixed or tracker period (as after you may shift deal). To help, the MSE Total Cost Assessment in our best buys comparison factors in fee and rate for your cheapest.
Should I get a fix or tracker/discount? With a fix, the amount you repay is, er, fixed - it's insurance against possible rate rises. Variable deals move with UK interest rates (sometimes just at a provider's whim). Currently you only pay a touch more to fix.
We can't predict future interest rates, so focus on your finances - the more crucial the surety of knowing the cost, the more you should hedge towards fixing, and fixing longer. If a rock-bottom deal's your focus, hedge towards short-term trackers. See Fix vs Variable help.
Is your credit score good enough? This has become a huge part of whether you'll be accepted, and when possible, you should start preparing months ahead - see my 36 tips to boost your credit score.
Try to minimise outgoings AT LEAST 3mths ahead. For the past 18 months or so lenders have had to stress-test if your mortgage would be affordable if rates hit 6-7%. You may have escaped this when you first got a mortgage - now they want evidence of income, big bills, expenses, even eating out. So being frugal in advance helps.
While in general I'm a fan of 'affordability checks', as they ensure people don't push their finances too far, it's not logical for many remortgages. I've had tweets such as: "Circs hadn't changed. No missed payments. No debts bar new cars. £90k equity. Yet no one'd give us a mortgage."
Mortgage brokers can help boost acceptance. You can, and often should, use a broker to help find the right deal. They've info unavailable to consumers, eg, lenders' credit and affordability criteria. A good broker can ease acceptance by matching you to the right deal - and the application process is quicker. See Top Mortgage Brokers.
Yet brokers miss some mortgages... A few lenders, incl First Direct, Yorkshire Bank & Tesco, cut brokers out and sell only direct to the public. So some brokers can and do exclude them - we suggest you use a broker in conjunction with our mortgage comparison, which has all these deals.
Got savings? They could get you a better mortgage. At every 5% LTV threshold from 95% down to 60%, deals tend to get better, so a little extra can have a big impact on your mortgage rate. Eg...
Imagine you've a £150,000 home, and want a £137,000 remortgage. That's 91% LTV, and the top 5yr fix is 4.49%. Yet if you use £2,000 of savings to reduce the amount needed, you'd then be at 90% LTV, where the top 5yr fix is 2.88%, saving £1,550/year in payments.
Don't fall for the hard sell on mortgage extras. Lenders & brokers may try to flog their mortgage life insurance, home insurance or mortgage PPI. These can be expensive, so use the links above to check what you need & find the cheapest (but check your lender won't charge if you buy elsewhere).
PS, from Martin. I'm taking a couple of days off, so having been through the big stuff, this final email's in the MSE team's more-than-capable hands.
As the Competition Authority bemoaned last week, only 3% of people switched bank last year, and 57% have been loyal to theirs for over a decade. No wonder some banks bribe people to switch. So take advantage, do it now and with 58 days to Christmas, the money should arrive in time to be a festive boon. Full info in Top Bank Accounts - in brief:
Ends Sun. Free £150, top service, 0% overdraft, 6% linked savings. First Direct* has won every customer service poll we've done (92% rate it 'great'). Apply via this link by 11.59pm Sun and switchers get £150 (£100 after). It also has a £250 0% overdraft and gives access to its 6% regular saver.
Ends Mon. Free £125, £5 cashback, 5% interest & 5% linked savings. Until 5pm Mon, via this link, TSB* gives accepted switchers a free £125 (nowt after) on its recently launched '555' deal which has 5% cashback on the first £100 of debit card contactless spending a month (till Dec 2016) - so a free monthly £5 for many. Plus there's 5% AER interest on balances up to £2,000, and access to a 5% linked regular saver account.
FREE CASH FOR CHRISTMAS - THE BANKS THAT PAY YOU TO SWITCH
All credit-score you. To get the bonus you need to use their 'switching services' (switches take around 7 days).
(1) This is no of days AFTER you've switched and satisfied the minimum monthly pay in and set up the required direct debits. (2) If you've been to this page before, it may show a £125 bonus. Clear your cache, or try another browser to get the £150. (3) Pick the Current Account Direct also available from sister bank Yorkshire*. (4) So maybe not in time for Xmas.
Do you earn enough to get 'em? All these deals, except M&S, set a min monthly deposit - as they want you to pay your income in each month (there's a workaround for most). TSB is £500/mth (equiv to a £6k salary), Halifax £750/mth (equiv £9,150), Co-op £800/mth (equiv £9,850), First Direct & Clydesdale £1k/mth (equiv £13,200). To get the bonus you usually need to meet this & have two direct debits set up - only after does the clock start on getting the cash.
Got savings? 3% interest may be better. The Santander 123* (81% 'great' service rating) pays 3% AER on balances of £3,000 to £20,000, plus up to 3% cashback on bills, which usually wipes out its fee. That fee's £2/mth now, rising to £5/mth in January - though it usually still wins if you've £10,000+. See Martin's Santander 123 fee hike analysis. More options in Top Interest Paying Bank Accounts.
Forget Candy Crush and Tinder, there's a new app in town. We've been working on it for a while, and as you'd expect from MSE, it is of course totally free with no pop-up ads. Get it from the iPhone App Store & Android's Google Play.
Compare 40 bureaux for the cheapest travel cash (& collection-only local search). Tell it how many euros, dollars, ringgits or whatever you want & it finds the cheapest, incl fees. Plus it's got a new function we've never had on the site - if you select 'collection' you can now limit it only to those within a set distance.
When away, it tells you how best to pay. We've built a personalised currency calc where you can store the plastic you have, or what you paid for your holiday cash. Then whenever you buy something it'll tell you the true rate and how much it costs.
We've improved the TravelMoneyMax website too. Our online travel money comparison also compares 40 bureaux. In the past, if you wanted collection not delivery, it'd show you rates for all UK bureaux. Now you can choose to input your postcode and say how far you want to travel - then sort by amount or distance within that.
Let us know what you think. These are new tools, and we always appreciate feedback, including glitches, so please email TMM feedback (pls say which app you're using, iPhone or Android, or if it's the site version).
This week alone, MoneySavers in our forum have won a PS4, £5,000 cash & a holiday to Spectre filming locations in the Sahara. It's all about 'comping', a potentially profitable hobby. See 44 Comping Tips, here are a few nuggets:
Join the MSE forum comping team. Comping's not just about entering the odd contest. It's a systematic way of sourcing and entering 100s of the right ones. To help, join the MSE comping team where compers post contests, enter others' contests and cheer when people win, bringing the hobby to life.
Our new TV Game Shows blog lists 12 shows to apply for & how to boost your chances of getting picked. Plus Comping Apps offer prizes for challenges such as scanning products in shops - forumite poohbear1 got lucky: "I won an iPhone - it really paid off."
Another huge MSE comping win: "I won a car, holiday to Mauritius and £1k." While big success isn't certain, it happens. Forumite HollySmith says: "OMG. I won a VW Up car, holiday to Mauritius and £1k through a Channel 4 comp. Cannot believe it." Read her full story.
Last week 28,131 voted on whether they want the UK to stay in the EU - and most didn't. Only 41% in England thought we should stay, while it was 43% in Wales, 44% in N Ireland and 62% in Scotland. Across the UK, those aged 25 to 34 most want us to stay (65%) - those aged 65+ most want us to leave (71% voted 'leave'). See full results.
Thu 29 Oct - Good Morning Britain, ITV, Deals of the Week, 7.40am. Watch previous Fri 30 Oct - This Morning, ITV, Martin's Quick Deals, from 10.30am. Watch previous Mon 2 Nov - This Morning, ITV, Money Monday, from 10.30am. Mon 2 Nov - Consumer Panel, BBC Radio 5, 12pm-1pm. Subscribe to podcast
Thu 29 Oct - Share Radio, MSE Amy and MSE Rebecca, 11am Tue 3 Nov - BBC Radio Cambridgeshire, 2.30pm
QUESTION OF THE WEEK
Q: I own my flat as a leaseholder and have contents insurance - the freeholder's buildings insurance covers the building. Say my washing machine flooded and damaged the building structure, ie, it was 'my fault', would the freeholder's buildings insurance cover it, as I don't have buildings insurance myself? Or would I get a big bill? Adam, by email.
MSE Tony's A: In most cases, you should be OK. We asked a number of major insurers including Admiral, Aviva, AXA, Churchill, Direct Line and LV, plus the trade body that represents insurers, the Association of British Insurers.
They all told us most buildings insurance policies taken by freeholders or management companies on behalf of leaseholders usually cover structural damage even if the problem began in your flat, as long as you didn't do anything reckless. Of course, your contents insurance should cover contents in your home.
Do double-check the precise buildings insurance cover to be safe though. See our Cheap Home Insurance guide for more information on protecting your home.
Great Scott! Marty McFly and the Doc arrive back in the future (but where are the hoverboards?)
If you were gripped by last week's Back to the Future Day (21 Oct 2015, the date in the future the 1985 characters travelled to), watch this skit as Marty and Doc Brown arrive in 2015 and their bemusement grows as they learn to take a selfie and ask: "You haven't invented flying cars yet - do you at least have hoverboards?"
We hope you save some money, Martin & the MSE team
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