Press comment: Gemma Harle's three takeaways

From Bank of England's Q3 mortgage statistics


Gemma Harle - Press Releases

Managing Director – Mortgage Network

11 December 2018

If you are covering the Bank of England’s Q3 mortgage statistics released today, please see the following comment from Gemma Harle, Managing Director of Intrinsic Mortgage Network, part of Quilter:

Mortgage arrears

Figures released by the BoE today show that mortgage balances with arrears grew for the first time since Q2 2016. This is worrying considering last week the FCA published a Thematic Review which found that some customers who had long-term mortgage arrears were not receiving consistent and appropriate service from their lenders at what must be an inevitably stressful and financially complicated time. Often customers who have long-term mortgage arrears are vulnerable and the industry needs to identify and engage customers that are at risk of falling behind on their payments.

First-time buyers

We recently saw the Government break out the fan fair and pat themselves on the back for the supposedly great work that the Help to Buy scheme heralded. While helping 400,000 first time buyers get on the housing ladder is certainly nothing to turn your nose up at, the picture is less rosy if you look at the broader picture for first time buyers.  According to the Bank of England statistics, the share of new lending to first-time buyers remained steady at 21% in Q3, having steadily dropped since the start of the year. If we are to truly start to address the problem of ‘generation rent’ we need to speed up the pace of change with multiple policies, which could include incentivising downsizing. This will ultimately free up stock further down the chain and give first-time buyers a better chance of getting their first foot on the housing ladder.


These statistics further show that the amateur landlord is desperately struggling to be profitable in an increasingly hostile new tax environment. Landlords have started to feel the pinch given the crackdown on buy to let and so it’s unsurprising that fewer people are taking on that burden. As the higher tax bill phases in, by 2020 landlords may find that they are actually losing money if they maintain their current rents.

In simplistic terms, previously landlords could offset all their mortgage interest against rental income before calculating the tax due. So if their rental income was £750 a month and the interest on their mortgage was £750 they wouldn’t pay any tax on that. Now they can offset 50%, next year they will be able to offset 25% and in 2020 they won’t be able to offset any. So if they’re a higher rate tax payer with a £750 a month mortgage their tax bill grows from £0 to £300.

For more information contact

Alex Berry
02380 726260
07741 151931

Notes to editors

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Quilter plc oversees £118.1 billion in customer investments (as at 30 September 2018).

It has an adviser and customer offering spanning: financial advice; investment platforms; multi-asset investment solutions and discretionary fund management.

The business is comprised of two segments: Wealth Platforms and Advice and Wealth Management.

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Advice and Wealth Management encompasses the financial planning network, Intrinsic; Quilter Private Client Advisers; discretionary fund management business, Quilter Cheviot; and Quilter Investors, the Multi-asset investment solutions business.

The Quilter plc businesses are being re-branded to Quilter over a period of approximately two years:

  • The Multi-asset business is now Quilter Investors
  • Intrinsic to Quilter Financial Planning
  • The private client advisers business is now Quilter Private Client Advisers
  • The UK Platform to Quilter Wealth Solutions
  • The International business to Quilter International
  • The Heritage life assurance business to Quilter Life Assurance
  • Quilter Cheviot will retain its name

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