Online mortgage shopping 'on the rise'

17 April 2003
The telephone and the internet are becoming increasingly popular ways of searching for the best deals on new mortgages, says a new survey from the Alliance and Leicester.

In figures which mirror the growth of e-retailing for financial products, the company's movingimproving index found that 12 per cent of Britons described the telephone as their preferred method of applying for a mortgage, with telephone applications the most popular among people who were remortgaging or who were already homeowners.

Those who preferred to use the internet for their applications cited a variety of reasons for doing so, with 52 per cent stating that shopping for a mortgage online was more convenient than doing it in person.

Many of those who preferred to use the internet for their personal finance shopping stated that they believed better deals were available on the internet than on the high street, with 18 per cent hoping to save money by using the internet for their mortgage applications.

Geographically, Londoners emerged as the most likely to use the internet for their mortgage needs, while residents of Yorkshire and Humberside were least likely to shop for their mortgage online.

The study found that the majority of first time buyers were more confident when holding personal meetings with mortgage providers, with an overwhelming 91 per cent preferring to apply for their mortgages in person.

The A&L movingimproving survey takes place four times a year, and questions 2000 people across the UK on their preferred methods of mortgage application.