Housing & mortgage round up: Slow week for housing news

After last week’s bumper round up, including the house price figures from the Halifax and Nationwide, this week has been relatively quiet for housing news. We have however managed to find a few interesting stories for those of you who need your weekly fix of housing and mortgage news. Mortgage lenders cut interest rates again As the effects of the government’s Funding for Lending Scheme (FLS) kicks, 10 mortgage lenders have reduced the interest rates on many of their deals. Amongst the lenders dropping their rates ING Direct has cut their two and five year fixed rates, whilst Nationwide are cutting their two ...

Increased banking competition as Metro Bank expand branch network

After the announcement by Marks & Spencer that they will be opening banks in 50 of their high street stores Metro Bank have said they will be opening a further seven branches in the south east. The move by Metro Bank, along with those from Marks & Spencer and Tesco represents a step towards greater competition in the banking sector, which experts will hope benefits the consumer. Metro Bank says they have raised £126 million to fund their growth plans, which will initially include new branches in Reading, Brighton, Hemel Hempstead, Romford, Staines and Epsom. The bank plans to have over 200 ...

Pensions: Tesco to increase retirement age to 67

Tesco has said it wants to make major changes to its pension scheme, which could see employees retiring later with smaller pension incomes. Tesco, the UK’s largest private sector employer, has started a consultation with staff on changes it would like to introduce to its staff pension; it is likely other UK employers will be monitoring the outcome closely before making decisions about their own scheme. Pension changes The consultation focuses on two main areas, moving the retirement age from 65 to 67 and increasing pension payments in line with CPI (Consumer Prices Index) and not RPI (Retail Prices Index) in retirement. Income from ...