(After several minutes of faffing with the bank’s labyrinthine telephone triage system, plus a few minutes confirming mortgage account number, mother’s maiden name etc. ad infinitum.)
CALL CENTRE EMPLOYEE: So how can we help you today?
MISS THRIFTY: Well, our two-year fixed rate mortgage deal runs out in the next few months, and we’re hoping to get something else in place. So I’d like to find out about what you have on offer right now.
CCE: Well, when your fixed rate runs out in February you’ll automatically go onto our standard variable rate. That’s 7.09% right now. So you would be paying around £868 a month.
MISS THRIFTY: Yuck.
CCE: Oh, but you don’t have to stay on that rate! We have lots of mortgage products available to existing customers such as yourself.
MISS THRIFTY: Really? Are they fixed rate?
CCE: Hmmm. Well, we have a few fixed rate products.
MISS THRIFTY: That’s reassuring. When I checked your website, all the fixed rate deals were demanding 75% loan-to-value. Our loan-to-value will be 80%.
CCE: Ah… Yeah, we have one product that would be suitable for you.
MISS THRIFTY: Just one? We’re super-reliable, you know. We’ve never missed our payments.
CCE: Well, you could apply for this product. It has a five-year fixed rate of 6.99%.
MISS THRIFTY: So how much would we be paying every month?
MISS THRIFTY: Oh! So pretty much the same as the standard variable rate then?
CCE: Plus a £724 arrangement fee.
MISS THRIFTY: Hmmm. I think we’ll have to have a shop around.
CCE: Sure. See ya!
Ack. I’m not looking forward to our remortgage mission. Any advice would be gratefully received!