Consumers’ debt caution continues, says BBA

UK consumers continued their cautious approach to debt in March as demand for home loans and unsecured credit remained weak, banks have said.

The number of home loans approved for house purchases was below the recent average the British Bankers’ Association (BBA) said.  Meanwhile, repayments continued to outstrip new spending on credit cards, despite the amount spent having risen.

The figures reflect a safety-first trend that has been seen for months.



One in five ‘couldn’t afford food’ if mortgage payments rose

At this time when several lenders have increased the standard variable rates (SVRs) on their mortgages, one in seven home owners struggles to pay the mortgage and 20% would not have enough for essentials, such as food, if their repayments rose by £100 per month.

According to the research by the consumer group Which? 70% of mortgage holders are concerned about an increase in interest rates.



Are you a taxi driver for your kids?

Sainsbury’s Finance have found that mums and dads provide £32 billion worth of free taxi services for their kids every year.

Their research found that each week, 9.3 million parents cover an average of 24.7 miles a week driving their children around, which is worth £46.17 at Hackney Carriage rates.  They also spend an average of 1 hour 14 minutes sitting in their cars waiting for their children, worth a further £20.49 per week.

On a total basis, parents collectively clock up 230 million miles every week – equivalent to the distance between Earth and Mars.  If charged at Hackney Carriage rates, this would cost in excess of £621 million.


Source:  Credit Action – April 2012 edition

Are you on the best mortgage deal for you?

A survey by has found that nearly half of all mortgage holders have failed to look at their mortgage arrangements in the last three years.

49% of borrowers admit that they have not reviewed their mortgage since the Bank of England’s base rate fell to 0.5% in March 2009.  In addition, 56% of mortgage holders say that they are in fact unaware of the interest rate that they are currently paying on their deal.


Source:  Credit Action – April 2012 edition

Living near the Olympic site?

If so, figures from Lloyds TSB suggest that the average price of a home close to the main site of the 2012 Olympic Games has increased by over £60,000 since July 2005, when it was announced that London had won the right to host the Games.

In July 2005, the average house price across the 14 postal districts closest to the main site was £206,145.  However, by November 2011 this had increased by 30% to £268,884, a rise of £62,739 or £815 per month!


Source:  Credit Action – April 2012 edition