Press release:

uSwitch comments on interest rate decision

Commenting on the decision from the Bank of England to raise interest rates to 0.5%, Tashema Jackson, money expert at uSwitch.com, says: “Despite the warnings, this first rise in interest rates for ten years could well serve as a warning call to millions of mortgage holders to get their finances in order, as many will have never experienced a rate rise and the knock on effect it has on their finances.

“Depending on the type of mortgage that homeowners hold, the increase in the Bank of England’s base rate could have an effect on mortgage repayments. For customers on a tracker rate mortgage, or a standard variable rate, there is likely to be an immediate impact. However, even for the 2.1 million people who are coming to the end of their fixed rate deal in the next 15 months, this rate rise could have implications as lenders remove their lowest fixed rate deals[1].

“Now could be the time to act, as it won’t just be mortgage holders who feel the pinch. We have become used to low rates and borrowed accordingly – the latest figures show a nearly 10% rise in consumer credit lending[2]. The rise in the base rate of interest could make it harder for some consumers to service this debt, as we’ve already seen the longest 0% interest free credit card offers being withdrawn. Take a good look at your finances and consider which are the right deals for your circumstances, this can help your money go that little bit further.

“This rate rise could have an impact on all borrowers, so if you are worried about what the rate rise will do to your finances, speak to your lender and ask them what is the likely outcome. For many, the impact won’t be instant, so you still have time to get your finances in order.

“If you are really struggling and don’t know where to turn, a debt charity such as StepChange, will be able to talk you through your options.

Find out how you could save over £1,000 a year with uSwitch here.

 

 

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Notes to editors

All research referred to was conducted by Opinium, August 2017.

2,005 nationally representative UK adults (aged 18+).

According to figures released by online mortgage broker Trussle in June 2017 (see here).

  1. Calculation based on UK Finance data that roughly half of the 4.2 million regulated mortgage borrowers on fixed rates will come to the end of their deal this year or next. This equals 2.1 million households.
  2. Increase in consumer credit lending increased by 9.9% in the 12 months to September 2017. Bank of England Bankstats (Monetary & Financial Statistics) September 2017, Table A5.2. http://www.bankofengland.co.uk/statistics/Pages/bankstats/2017/sep.aspx

About us

Launched in September 2000, uSwitch is an online and telephone price comparison and switching service, helping consumers get a better deal on gas, electricity, broadband, TV services, mobiles and personal finance products including mortgages, credit cards, car and home insurance. Last year we saved UK consumers over £278 million on their energy bills alone.

Customers can sign up to an account that automatically monitors the energy market and notifies them when they can move to a cheaper tariff, while broadband customers can conduct a speed test to find out how fast their broadband is and identify the best deal for their postcode.

The multi award-winning 'Switching Made Simple' app allows customers to compare energy, broadband, credit card, mobile and SIM-only deals – and uSwitch also has a UK contact centre manned by energy and broadband experts. Customers can post their latest energy bills to FREEPOST USWITCH to receive a free call back and be guided through the comparison process, or they can email customerservices@uswitch.com with their postcode and usage details.

uSwitch is owned by ZPG, which operates some of the UK’s most trusted digital brands that help empower smarter property and household decisions including Zoopla, Money, PrimeLocation and SmartNewHomes. uSwitch is the proud sponsor of Britain’s Got Talent 2018.

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