The boom in online banking and the success of some of the bigger online banks looks likely to revolutionise the way we manage our finances. Mortgages are no exception � now that virtually all lenders have an online presence and many will allow you to access your account on the web, new innovations are making mortgages ever more flexible and can offer fantastic deals for borrowers.

Finding information on the web is one of the easiest ways to compare mortgages. A good source of general info and tables of the current best deals is www.moneyfacts.co.uk – an impartial organisation that annually gives awards to the best lenders. This is a good indication of a lender offering consistently good rates and terms – you can check the most recent award winners on the website. There are now a vast amount of mortgages which you can apply for online, saving you the time-consuming process of filling in forms and waiting for a postal response.

Among the online providers, Intelligent Finance has a good reputation for offset and flexible mortgages. This could be the way of the future, with your personal accounts, savings and mortgage all accessible over the net. An offset mortgage means that instead of receiving interest on your current account and some of your savings, you reduce the amount paid on your mortgage. Controlling all your accounts online and a flexible mortgage mean that you can juggle your finance to make the most of what you have, and doing it online can be much more convenient than having to visit branches or write letters.

Cahoot offers mortgages through the Abbey with special rates only available to online customers. Though the range is fairly limited at present, the rates are good. It�s likely more and more mortgages will be available through online lenders, with ever increasing flexibility and options.

Other parts of the mortgage process are set to change with the rise in internet business � there are companies who now offer online conveyancing, with email or text message updates and online progress reports. This can take some of the hassle out of the conveyancing process, with no need for meetings with a solicitor.

For general advice on mortgages, and particularly if you have a complaint or problem, your first port of call should be the FSA website. They provide information and links to the ombudsman schemes that are set up to protect the financial consumer. www.fsa.gov.uk

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