The housing market is "sitting on a plateau", a lenders' group has said, despite renewed competition between providers on mortgage rates.
Gross mortgage lending totalled £17.8bn in September, down 1% on the previous month, the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) said. However, this was 10% higher than a year earlier. The CML said any concerns that the Bank of England had about a potential housing market bubble were "abating". It said that the surge in activity in London had slowed down. "Recent indicators and policy actions corroborate our view of a gentle easing in market conditions. There is growing evidence that mortgage lending activity, and the housing market, are sitting on a plateau," said the CML's chief economist, Bob Pannell.
Gross mortgage lending in the third quarter of the year totalled an estimated £55.5bn, the CML said. This was 8% up on the previous quarter and a 13% increase on the same period a year earlier. The figures come as the Bank of England's own Trends in Lending report said that net lending by mortgage lenders was broadly unchanged in the third quarter of the year compared with the previous three months. Despite the steady levels of lending, mortgage providers have been competing over rates.
Commentators suggest this has picked up after new regulatory rules introduced in April have now bedded in. "Lenders who are behind target for the year as a result of the delays caused by the mortgage market review are cutting their fixed rates in order to catch up before the end of December," said Mark Harris, chief executive of mortgage broker SPF Private Clients. "We expect this to continue as they look to develop a strong pipeline for next year." Aaron Strutt, of mortgage broker Trinity Financial, said: "Many of the banks and building societies are not lending as much money as they would like and they are lowering their rates to tempt in more customers. "Back in 2009 there was real surprise when the lenders started to offer sub-2% mortgages. Many of the lenders [now] have the ability to offer even cheaper rates. "The lenders love topping the best-buy tables and often undercut each other to make sure they are mentioned."
Sam: 21st Oct 2014 15:40:00
Lenders relax maximum mortgage age
Lenders relax maximum mortgage age If you're an older homeowner, the last few years may have been challenging if you were looking to remortgage your property.
Drawdown investors remain optimistic
Drawdown investors remain optimistic The onset of the pension freedoms gave retirees more choice than ever over how to spend their pension pot, and many are making the most of that flexibility by opting for income drawdown, whereby their pension savings remain invested in the stock market. Yet this in itself can pose risks, particularly given how volatile the stock market can be, but luckily, investors don't seem to be put off.
Equity release lending hits record £3.6bn
Equity release lending hits record £3.6bn 2018 proved to be another record year for the equity release sector, with latest figures revealing that retired homeowners released £3.6bn in property wealth over the year, the highest annual total ever seen – and by all accounts, 2019 could go even better!
Motivation to remortgage at 11-year high
Motivation to remortgage at 11-year high The financial incentive for mortgage borrowers reaching the end of their current fixed rate deal to remortgage to a new deal has soared to an 11-year high.
What's coming up in 2018....