HC Deb 30 April 1968 vol 763 cc161-2W
70. Mr. Rose

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government what steps he intends to take to offset the recent increase in mortgage interest rates.

Mr. Greenwood

I have no proposals for further assistance for house purchasers beyond the help they can already obtain through the option mortgage scheme and tax reliefs. Many borrowers will continue to make the same monthly payments to building societies who commonly agree to an extension of the mortgage period.

Mr. Robert Howarth

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government if, in view of the proposals by the National Board for Prices and Incomes regarding council house rents published on 25th April, he will seek to take similar powers to restrain the Building Societies Association from implementing their recommendation that borrowers' interest rates be raised by ½ per cent.

Mr. Greenwood

No. The circumstances are different. The Building Societies' Association recommended in- creases in the rates paid to investors, and consequentially in the rates charged to borrowers, because they thought it necessary to do so to maintain an inflow of funds sufficient to meet the demand on them for new mortgages. This is a matter for their judgment, but deposits with Societies had fallen very sharply. I am glad to see that some societies have found it possible to postpone the introduction of higher rates to existing borrowers.

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