This was an interesting piece by Louise McBride in the Sunday Independent. The assumptions were based on a fairly hefty mortgage figure, but the general idea remains strong, that if you get a lower mortgage rate you can save money.
Our contribution was to say that in an ere of low interest rates and with rates falling that “The banks all know that interest rates are coming down – and that one way to kill the switcher market is to get more people onto fixed rate mortgages,” said Karl Deeter of Irish Mortgage Brokers. “Banks are playing a defensive game. They’re not competing on variable rates – they’re competing on fixed rates instead.”
To us this is simplistic but also true, if banks fear attrition of their performing loan book the best thing you can do is take high variable margin from those willing to pay it, or who aren’t bothered by it (as is common with older loans) or to defend your position by locking in potential switchers seeking value by offering them value in return for commitment (to the fixed rate contract).