Interest Rates: Warwick and Leamington

Treasury written question – answered at on 8 January 2024.

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Photo of Matt Western Matt Western Shadow Minister (Education)

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will make an assessment of the impact of trends in the level of interest rates on homeowners in Warwick and Leamington constituency.

Photo of Conor McGinn Conor McGinn Independent, St Helens North

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the impact of trends in the level of interest rates on homeowners in St Helens North constituency.

Photo of Bim Afolami Bim Afolami The Economic Secretary to the Treasury

The pricing and availability of mortgages is a commercial decision for lenders in which the Government does not intervene. However, the Government recognises this is a concerning time for mortgage borrowers.

Rising interest rates are in part driven by Bank Rate. Monetary policy is the responsibility of the independent Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Bank of England. The MPC continues to have the Government’s full support as it takes action to return inflation to target through its independent monetary policy decisions.

The average offered mortgage rates on 2-year and 5-year fixed rates have now fallen from their peak in the Summer.

The Government has taken steps to limit the impact of rising interest rates on mortgage holders, through the Mortgage Charter. This Charter sets out the standards that signatory lenders – who represent over 90% of the UK mortgage market – will adopt when helping their customers.

We have also taken a number of measures aimed at helping people to avoid repossession, including protection in the courts through the Pre-Action Protocol, the Housing Loss Prevention Advice Service (HLPAS), and Support for Mortgage Interest (SMI) loans. Accordingly, arrears and repossessions remain low by historical standards, despite the rise in interest costs.

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