Adam Oldfield, chief revenue officer at Phoebus, says:
“Today’s increase was not wholly unexpected, even though two members would have preferred the rate to remain at 3.5%. Although global inflation remains high the latest figures in the UK show that perhaps inflation is starting to level out. So, it will be interesting to see whether the bank uses the next meeting to increase the base rate again to the predicted peak of 4.5%, in line with previous announcements from the governor.
“For the housing market it will be the headlines of an ‘increase in the base rate’ that most would-be house buyers, and those remortgaging, that will see first. Whether or not mortgage lenders are automatically raising their rates it may be enough to cause a further knock in confidence, which could stall the market further. We have heard that more house-hunters have registered interest in January, so demand is picking up. It just depends on how people perceive another hike in the base rate and how badly they need to move. No doubt lenders will be jockeying for business, which may see the recent spate of fixed rate reductions continue.”