Helping a customer buy and own a home is one of the most significant things we can do for them.
Additionally, supporting our customers if they have trouble paying can make a significant difference to their lives.
More than ever in 2020, we have stepped up to support our mortgage customers through uncertain times.
Mortgage highlights 2020:
Buy a home
- This year we have helped more than 153,000 new customers complete their mortgage application, totalling over £31bn worth of gross new lending.
- More than 32,000 of these customers were first-time buyers. (*)
- Digital mortgage applications continue to grow, increasing 10% year on year.
- The launch of our Green Mortgage supports the bank's purpose-led climate ambition that 50% of our mortgage book is rated with an energy performance certificate (EPC) rating of C or above by 2030. Our Green Mortgage will offer lower interest rates for customers purchasing homes with a rating of A or B, rewarding them for playing their part in the fight against climate change.
Own a home
- This year more than 203,000 of our existing customers coming to the end of their deal have chosen to take a new deal with us, with over 127,000 of these customers choosing to renew their mortgage digitally.
- In 2020, we made it possible for customers to renew their mortgage through our mobile app.
- We have also developed our digital switcher journey, making it easier to compare products and monthly costs, allowing our customers to feel empowered to make their own financial decisions.
- We remain focused on helping vulnerable customers at risk of being financially stretched. We proactively contact customers who:
- Are on standard variable rate (SVR), who may be financially stretched and may benefit from switching to a fixed rate product.
- Are coming to the end of a fixed-term deal and may be financially stretched, to outline the options available to them.
- Our contact includes both writing to customers and following up with a phone call to offer further support if required.
- Additionally, in 2020, we introduced a programme to contact customers who had taken a payment holiday following the Covid-19 outbreak and have rolled off their fixed deal onto SVR.
- Other forms of proactive contact include:
- Customers with interest-only mortgages, to offer support when considering their options to repay.
- Customers who have an offset account but are not benefitting from their offset facility.
- Customers who lease their property to remind them about changes in legislation relating to EPC ratings. This is required to enable customers to continue to lease their property (April ‘20).
Home repossession is always a last resort for NatWest Group, we have a team dedicated to supporting customers in financial difficulty and find the best way to manage this with them. It is our policy to only go ahead with a repossession after all other appropriate options have been explored with the customer.
In 2020, we repossessed 100** properties, compared with 367** in 2019.
Repossessions are down this year due to the evictions moratorium which will run from 16 March 2020 to 1 April 2021 due to Covid-19.
(*) Limited assurance provided by Ernst & Young LLP.
** total includes both Personal & Business properties.
“NatWest has been named 'Best Mortgage Provider' in this year's British Bank Awards – for the second year in a row. This award demonstrates how we are making banking easier for our customers”.
Awards for our mortgage lending
British Bank Awards 2020
- Best Mortgage Provider (NatWest)