Making life more difficult or a good idea for mortgages??

19th December 2011
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The FSA has taken advantage of a low point in the economy to put in place these proposals ahead of the next boom - whenever that may come.

A number of proposals, which were considered but rejected by the FSA, include a restriction on the amount a person or couple can borrow when compared to earnings, a total ban on interest only mortgages and tight limits on granting mortgages for people heading into retirement. Instead the FSA has proposed the following three rules:

:: An affordability assessment must be carried out which includes verifying an individual or couple's income. This was not always the case during the last boom. :: Unavoidable bills such as utilities, council tax and spending on children must be taken into account. :: All mortgage lenders must consider potential rises in interest rates and assess whether a borrower would be able to repay in such an eventuality. Commenting on the report, the chairman of the FSA, Lord Turner, said: "We believe that these are common sense proposals which serve the interests of both lenders and borrowers. "While the excesses of the pre-crisis period have largely disappeared from the current market, it is important to ensure that better practice endures in future when memories of the crisis recede and the dangers of poor practice return. "The three key proposals are, we believe, the most effective way to tackle the problem of risky lending. But it is essential that we understand what their impact would be - how many consumers would be protected from the distress of arrears and repossessions, and, how many consumers who could have afforded a mortgage might have to take out a smaller mortgage or to delay their purchase."  

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