Halifax Intermediaries upgrades green loans, loosens criteria   – Mortgage Strategy

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Halifax Intermediaries will launch two new features to boost its green home loans on Monday (13 February).  

The broker-only unit also plans to bring in changes to its affordability criteria “that will offer some more financially resilient customers greater lending”.  

It will introduce Energy Performance Certificate Capture for new homebuyer loans and remortgages at the application stage.  

The lender says this will allow it to “recognise and reward improved energy efficiency with more products, services and policies that support borrowers to make greener home loan decisions”.  

For brokers, the firm says, the EPC Capture process links directly to a government database, and creates an opportunity for advisers to have early discussions about home energy-efficiency measures with customers.  

It adds that along with the Halifax Intermediaries’ Home Energy Saving Tool, EPC Capture “will help brokers help their clients understand how they can futureproof their home with energy-efficient improvements and how to fund them”.  

The arm is also expanding its green mortgage range by offering cashback to remortgage customers. It already does this for homebuyers.  

From Monday, borrowers looking to buy or remortgage an energy performance certificate home rated at A or B can qualify for £250 cashback.  

This cashback offer will also be offered through direct mortgage channels for Halifax and Lloyds Bank.  

The lender says it will also introduce affordability changes that will lift the maximum amount available to customers who borrow at a maximum loan-to-value ratio of 75%, on a fixed-term product of five years or more, or are remortgaging without taking on additional borrowing.  

This could see the maximum lending amount increase by up to 9%, or around £25,000, on an average application, it adds.  

As an example, the firm points out, that a joint homebuyer application with incomes of £50,000 and £25,000, considering one dependent and commitments of £300 per month, based on a 25-year repayment term and 75% LTV on a five-year fix, could see additional lending of £26,110, around 9%.  

Halifax and Scottish Widows Bank head of Intermediaries Amanda Bryden says: “The government’s goal of achieving net zero by 2050 is getting closer, and a significant part of achieving that is reducing the carbon emissions from the UK’s housing stock.   

“We want to help people who make energy-efficient buying and improvement choices; expanding our green mortgage range helps do that.   

“Collecting energy performance certificate information for each home we lend on will help us develop more and better products, policies, and practices in the future, to help borrowers make greener decisions and play their part in cutting the UK’s carbon emissions.   

She adds: “We are listening; and we understand that, in some cases, brokers would like us to take a more flexible approach to affordability.   

“Our new enhanced affordability model addresses this and continues to ensure we only lend responsibly to those we believe can afford it both now, and in the future.” 

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