BY: Caroline Mirakian, Head of National Accounts at Pepper Money
In any fast-moving situation, there is always likely to be a degree of speculation and misinformation. So, given that few events that have escalated as quickly as COVID-19, it’s unsurprising that there has been so much conjecture as to the impact it will have on different areas of our lives.
In the mortgage market this has been set against a backdrop of product and criteria changes and low approvals numbers. According to the Bank of England, the number of mortgage approvals for house purchase fell to just 9,300 in May, down from around 15,800 in April, and almost 90% below the level in February. While Moneyfacts said that the number of available 90% LTV deals fell from 183 to 70 between 1st June and 1st July.
Consequently, there has been speculation about the approach that lenders are taking when it comes to underwriting cases. So, what is the truth in how COVID-19 has impacted underwriting?