Brokers at Just Mortgages have seen one of their busiest weeks ever, as clients sought to pre-empt the coronavirus lockdown.
In the last week of March, Just Mortgages received more than 10% more applications than normal, with increased interest from consumers in light of the restrictions on movement now in force across the country in response to the pandemic.
Just Mortgages brokers have been conducting business exclusively by phone and video-call. Many have already been using video-conferencing for some time, enabling them to hit the ground running in response to the crisis.
The firm argues that the surge in enquiries is the product of strong demand in the market since the tail end of 2019, with signs of confidence returning after a prolonged period of political and economic uncertainty around Brexit negotiations.
Just Mortgages also believes it also reflects renewed anxiety, however, as the spread of the deadly Covid-19 virus forces the country into lockdown and puts a stop to all but ‘essential’ moves. With no way of knowing when the period of social distancing is likely to end, both buyers and sellers have been keen to keep their deals on track so that they are in a position to complete their moves at the earliest opportunity, the firm said.
Clients are also eager to get remortgages in place as homeowners approaching the end of a fixed-rate term seek to take advantage of low rates to help them through the uncertain period ahead.
Protection has been another key focus as brokers work with their clients to ensure they are resilient against this and future economic shocks.
John Phillips (pictured), national operations director for Spicerhaart and Just Mortgages, said: “With so much bad news around, it’s heartening to see our brokers are continuing to put everything into serving their clients’ needs.
“We’re under no illusions about what the immediate future could hold for the industry but we’re confident our business is robust and that once the lockdown is lifted we’ll continue to be in a strong position.
“In the meantime, we expect remortgaging to be a key area of activity, as hard-pressed homeowners look to secure a lower rate where possible.
“And the Covid-19 pandemic throws into stark relief the need for consumes to have the right protection policies in place alongside their mortgage. We will be doing whatever we can to help our clients protect themselves and their families in these uncertain times.”