Demand for specialist mortgages increased over the first quarter of the year, according to Paragon Mortgages’ latest Financial Advisors Confidence Tracking (FACT) Index report – based on interviews with 200 mortgage intermediaries.
The Index shows an increase in demand from both self-employed (24%) and complex income (17%) customers, indicating an increased requirement for specialist mortgage products and wider availability of products that meet the demands of underserved segments of the mortgage market.
Other customer types were largely unchanged in Q1, with high loan-to-value lending at 15%, interest only at 13%, lending into retirement 11%, low income 9%, and adverse credit 7%.
The average number of mortgages introduced per intermediary office in Q1 was 20, down from 21 in the previous quarter and the third successive fall.
Despite this more recent decline, the number of mortgages introduced has held between 20-25 for almost four years, maintaining a slow recovery tracked from 2009, when the number reached a record low of 14.
The report also revealed a positive forecast from intermediaries, with the expected change in overall business over the next three months up for the first time since Q1 2015, reversing consecutive reductions in each of the previous seven quarters.