If there is one word that will make a mortgage advisor put their head in their hands, it’s when someone says “remortgage”, because almost every single time the word is misused.
Things I’ve heard the word remortgage used to describe:
- Borrow more money on an existing mortgage with no home move involved.
- Switching to a new interest rate.
- Changing the names on the mortgage account, because of marriage or some other life event.
- Change of address as selling property and moving to another address (note: person not aware this requires more information as it could involve redeeming the mortgage, taking a new mortgage on a new property, or it could just be setting up a correspondence address).
- Changing to a BTL mortgage.
- In some cases, the person has not even known what they meant when using the word.
What does remortgage mean?
According to HSBC:
“If your mortgage is with another lender, easily move it to HSBC and you could get a better deal.”
According to Natwest:
“A remortgage is when you change the mortgage you currently have on your property, by moving it to a new lender.”
According to Barclays:
“Remortgaging means moving your mortgage to a new lender while staying in the same property. Our guide can help you decide if it’s right for you.”
According to Santander:
Well, their website isn’t great but the term remortgage is used in the context of “remortgage to us” (i.e. to Santander from another lender).
As you can see from these examples, there is a broad amount of consistency with respect to the definition of the term remortgage.
Why is this important to me? Why is it important to you?
“Words have power.” ~ Darren Scothern
“Words have the power to both destroy and heal. When words are both true and kind, they can change our world.” ~ Buddha
“There is power in words. What you say is what you get.” ~ Zig Ziglar
In short, say what you mean or else people will think you mean what you say.
The economy is in a bad state right now due to, well, **gestures vaguely at the Tory Party**
Also, the media have to shoulder some of the blame. A quick glance through articles on The Guardian, the BBC, and This Is Money (don’t judge me, it was one of the few sites that isn’t hidden behind a paywall) all use remortgage incorrectly. It’s almost as though people are being fed bullshit deliberately, but I’ve not got my conspiracy theorist hat on right now.
All this brings me to my next point about words having power. There’s been talk of “mortgage offers being withdrawn”, which is not strictly speaking true. A mortgage offer is issued when the lender is satisfied with all the necessary checks on you, your income, and the property. Offers can be withdrawn, but are generally valid for a few months (the exact length of time can vary according to a number of factors). However, when you look at some of the news stories in recent days that mention “mortgage offers being withdrawn”, they either mean products have been removed from circulation (interest rates the lender were willing to grant to customers are no longer available) or the borrower had approached the lender to see what deals were available, before going away to think about it. None of these are “mortgage offers”, and by not clarifying this point the media is complicit in whipping up a frenzy of panic amongst customers.
It might be the autistic in me but I swear when I hear terms being used incorrectly my blood pressure spikes.
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