Mortgage ‘myths’ hampering Scots homebuying ambition

The mortgage market in Scotland is stronger than many think, a new survey has argued. Picture: PA
The mortgage market in Scotland is stronger than many think, a new survey has argued. Picture: PA
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Scots’ attitudes to home buying have yet to catch up with the recovery in mortgage lending, according to new research from Barratt Homes, with misconceptions and confusion around the house buying process hampering the aspirations of potential homebuyers.

Fifty-four per cent of respondents aged 25 to 34 have given up on buying a home as they don’t think they’ll be able to get the deposit together.

Those surveyed believed they needed around 14 per cent of the value of a home for a deposit – nearly three times the potential minimum. Aspiring homeowners also overestimated the length of the mortage application process, and the detail they need to provide to demonstrate their outgoings.

Despite the majority of mortgage offers coming through within less than three weeks, on average Scots think that they will have to wait more than five weeks to hear back from their bank. One in twelve (8 per cent) think it will take longer than seven weeks.

On average, those considering buying a new home believe that they need to provide almost six months’ worth of bank statements. Most people simply need to demonstrate their spending habits via a budget planner form, Barrett Homes said. Despite Scots believing they would have to provide numerous bank statements, only one in six (17 per cent) expected to be asked about how often they eat out and less than half (47 per cent) expected to be asked if they were prepared to cut back to enable them to become a homeowner.

Speaking about the research, Adrian MacDiarmid, head of mortgage lender relations at Barratt Developments, said: “Our research highlighted that consumer attitudes have not kept up with the fact that the mortgage market has recovered strongly. But also it reveals misconceptions about what is needed when it comes to applying for a mortgage, from deposits through to questions asked as part of the mortgage process. We have lots of advice available to help buyers navigate the mortgage process - from online tools to our panel of recommended independent mortgage advisers.

“Mortgage rates are at an all-time low and although we know that they will increase at some point, buyers who are concerned about how this might affect them should consider some of the fixed rate schemes available that will give them the security of knowing that their payments will stay the same for the initial period of the mortgage. We believe that now is a great time to consider buying a home. From the Help to Buy scheme to our Deposit Boost programme, there are lots of ways to get onto the property ladder with a mortgage that you’re comfortable with.”