Wednesday, 3 March 2010

AIB Bank shun switchers; even less competition

I blogged earlier in the month about the closure of Bank of Scotland & Halifax and the negative effect on choices available to Irish mortgage-hunters that this brings.

Now AIB have confirmed that they are no longer open for mortgage switching business, i.e. moving your mortgage from Lender A to Lender B because Lender B offers better rates or a better package.

While AIB's release tells us that their "primary focus for the year ahead will be to support mortgage applications from 'First Time Buyers' and 'Home Movers', I see this move as a bad thing. If other lenders follow suit, Irish mortgage customers are then left in a position where the only way they can move mortgage is to buy another house! Think about it - your lender decides to add 2 or 3% on to your interest rate to boost their own margins and you can do nothing about it because no lender will accept switchers...

Let's hope that not all lenders follow this lead. A market without competition is not a good place to be.