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50-year mortgages for a foot on the ladder

Are ultra-long mortgages the answer?

The government is contemplating ultra-long mortgages as a way to boost homeownership, with 50-year terms currently under consideration.

Borrow more

Longer mortgage periods would allow potential homeowners to borrow larger sums, which means they would be able to aff ord higher-priced homes. With the average house price having climbed by 15.5% in the year to July3 , greater aff ordability would provide a huge boost to millions of people struggling to get a foot on the housing ladder.

Repay more

There is a price to pay, however. Calculations show just how expensive these deals could end up. One estimate4 for buying an average house on an average long-term fi xed rate deal (6.19%) puts monthly repayments at £1,140. Over a 50-year term, this would mean £472,984 paid in interest alone!

Longer terms

There is already a clear trend in favour of longer mortgage terms. Indeed, the average loan term taken out by a fi rst-time buyer hit 30 years in June5 , a record high. This is nearly fi ve years longer than the average loan term two decades ago.

3 ONS, 2022, 4 Barrows and Forrester, 2022, 5 UK Finance, 2022