A New Source of Economic Anxiety in Britain: Soaring Mortgage Rates

In June 2021, Monique Foulger reached a major milestone: At 30 years old, she bought her first home, a modest one-bedroom flat in Croydon in South London.

Barely a year and a half later, she’s bracing for a nearly 80 percent jump in her monthly mortgage payments.

Sharp increases in interest rates are set to upend Britain’s housing market and rock the country’s already weak economy. Britain’s homeowners are especially vulnerable because most mortgages have short-term fixed rates, which renew every few years, often every two or five years. For more than a decade, ultralow interest rates let British homeowners hop carefree from one low rate to another.

Now, the central bank has abruptly ended the era of easy money as it fights inflation, and millions of homeowners are facing hundreds, possibly thousands, of pounds in extra payments each year.

“I just put my head in the sand,” Ms. Foulger said of when she first heard how much higher her payments were likely to go.

By the end of…

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This article was written by Eshe Nelson and originally published on www.nytimes.com