LETTING & ESTATE AGENT

Highest quarterly lending since 2008, says CML

Highest quarterly lending since 2008, says CML

Gross mortgage lending held steady in September and was an estimated £16.2bn, according to the Council of Mortgage Lenders. This is only a slight change to August’s gross lending total of £16.4bn and is 41% higher than September last year (£11.5bn).

Gross lending for the third quarter of 2013 was an estimated £49.3bn, a 17.6% increase on the second quarter of 2013 and a 32% increase on the third quarter of last year.

This is the highest lending amount by quarter since Q3 of 2008, according to the CML, which says that house purchase volumes are now running at around 90,000 per month.

CML chief economist Bob Pannell said: “Indicators suggest we are witnessing the strongest house purchase performance in five years. House prices too have revived, but modestly, aside from a resurgent London market.

"With the Help to Buy mortgage guarantee scheme becoming fully operational in January and firms implementing the mortgage market review in April 2014, it may be several months into 2014 before we get a true gauge of the scale and reach of Help to Buy.

“For now, the scheme has launched against an already recovering UK housing market with several quarters of improving credit availability, growing competition, and strengthening demand."
 
Brian Murphy, head of lending at Mortgage Advice Bureau, said: “Both mortgage approvals and gross lending are hitting heights not seen since 2008, painting a picture of a thriving and increasingly accessible mortgage market.

“We have already seen more mortgage applications this year than in the whole of 2012, and the fall in fixed rates over the last 12 months mean that buyers can save as much as £1,080 on their annual mortgage payments.*

“With increasing mortgage product availability and competition between lenders, homebuyers with a deposit saved can enjoy an Indian summer in the property market. Confidence is the key and the Help to Buy scheme should stimulate consumer demand to the end of the year and beyond.

“Buyers will clearly hope for improved rates from new Help to Buy products as more lenders enter the scheme – especially as they can already choose from the lowest average two- and three-year fixed deals on record.

“It is still early days for the scheme, but access to 95% mortgages will play into the hands of first-time sellers, as well as first-time buyers, and encourage greater movement in the market.”