Knowledge Bank has revealed the most popular criteria searches that brokers conducted in November.
In the equity release category, none of October’s top five searches featured again this month – the second month running and the eighth time this year this has been the case.
The highest-ranked search, for ‘property with an annex/outbuildings/land/acreage’, had also previously topped the search chart in February. In second position, however, was ‘downsizing protection option’ – a search that has featured only twice before in the top five. A number of providers now offer this option so borrowers can avoid incurring early repayment charges if they move.
Another notable new entry was ‘lodger/boarder/rent a room’, a search that has never previously ranked in the top five.
In the residential category, ‘maximum age at end of term’ held onto the top spot it has maintained since February, but Knowledge Bank said the most telling move was the rise of ‘interest only’ into second place, its highest-ever ranking, pointing to households’ desire to maximise the amount of cash at their disposal.
Meanwhile, although the top three searches in the buy-to-let category remained broadly similar to recent months, new entries in fourth and fifth places respectively from ‘houses in multiple occupation (HMOs)’ and ‘holiday lets’ suggest would-be landlords are looking to profit from increasingly transient demand in the private rented sector.
Nicola Firth, CEO of Knowledge Bank, said: “It’s been a month of massive change in criteria searching with big movements across many lending categories. The equity release market, especially, continues to throw up surprises, with searches rarely featuring in the top five in two consecutive months.
“With lenders’ criteria showing so much change from day to day, it is vital that brokers take advantage of all the tools at their disposal so they can stay one step ahead and continue to give clients the best possible advice. Only by using technology to their advantage can brokers ensure they are getting the best deal for their client.”