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Financial Literacy, Present Bias and Alternative Mortgage Products

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  • John Gathergood
  • Joerg Weber

Abstract

Choosing a mortgage is one of the most important financial decisions made by a household. Financial innovation has given rise to more complex mortgage products with back-loaded payments, known as ‘Alternative Mortgage Products’ (AMPs), or ‘Interest-Only Mortgages’. Using a specially designed question module in a representative survey of UK mortgage holders, we investigate the effect of consumer financial sophistication on the decision to choose an AMP instead of a standard repayment mortgage. We show poor financial literacy and present bias raise the likelihood of choosing an AMP. Financially literate individuals are also more likely to choose an adjustable rate mortgage, suggesting they avoid paying the term premium of a fixed rate mortgage.

Suggested Citation

  • John Gathergood & Joerg Weber, 2015. "Financial Literacy, Present Bias and Alternative Mortgage Products," Discussion Papers 2015/07, University of Nottingham, Centre for Finance, Credit and Macroeconomics (CFCM).
  • Handle: RePEc:not:notcfc:15/07
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    Cited by:

    1. John Gathergood & Joerg Weber, 2015. "Is Poor Financial Literacy a Barrier to Home Ownership?," Discussion Papers 2015/16, University of Nottingham, Centre for Finance, Credit and Macroeconomics (CFCM).
    2. McElvaney, Terry & Lunn, Pete & McGowan, Féidhlim, 2018. "Do consumers understand PCP car finance? An experimental investigation," Papers WP586, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    3. repec:eee:juecon:v:99:y:2017:i:c:p:62-78 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Devine, Kenneth & Frost, Sarah & McElligott, Rory, 2015. "Switch and Save in the Irish Mortgage Market?," Economic Letters 08/EL/15, Central Bank of Ireland.

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    Keywords

    mortgages; financial literacy; present bias; alternative mortgage products;

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