Platform Loosens Buy to Let Investments Remortgage Stress Tests

Platform has loosened some of its buy to let remortgage stress tests in order to aid those who took out mortgages before the onset of new affordability rules.

Platform, the intermediary arm of the Co-operative Bank, has opted to loosen some buy to let remortgage stress tests from 145 per cent to a minimum of 128 per cent of rental cover. The intermediary will continue to apply a notional interest rate of 5.5 per cent on all buy to let lending.

The decision to make the tests less stringent was made in order to help landlords who took out mortgages with the bank before the new Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) affordability rules came into effect back in January 2017. Many landlords have reported difficulty accessing buy to let remortgage deals since the new guidelines were published. Platform is aiming to target this market.

The lender has opted to let this group access pound-for-pound remortgages without any increase in capital raising.

Other buy to let applications offered by Platform will continue to be stressed at 145 per cent, with a notional interest rate of 5.5 per cent as usual.

The Co-operative Bank and Platform head of mortgages and insurance Paul Norcott commented on the changes to the range. He said: ‘We have been closely following developments in the buy to let market since the new PRA guidelines were published, and we know that buy to let remortgaging has been more difficult for some landlords since the market adopted those guidelines.’

Platform is not the only lender to adapt to the PRA changes. Santander now offers buy to let remortgages without capital raising to landlords with a maximum of five properties mortgaged with the lender. Remortgages were also offered to those whose last buy to let property was purchased before 1 January 2017.

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