Scarcity of supply drags down lending figures
House purchase approvals in December totalled 68,218, 3.1% lower than the previous month, according to figures from chartered surveyor esurv, as supply issues persist in the housing market.
However, approvals were up over the year by 12.5% and the second half of the year was busier than the first, so the overall trend is upwards.
The slight monthly dip at the tail-end of the year comes as pressures of supply, higher prices and recent legislative measures are impacting upon the property market.
Richard Sexton, director of e.surv chartered surveyors, said: “House purchase lending has been rejuvenated over the past year and with the second half of 2015 looking stronger than the first in lending terms, the trend looks positive.
“Supply issues have become more of a factor in some areas, as both growing demand and house prices finally get the attention they deserve from the Government, but a limited choice of affordable homes is certainly proving a challenge to some buyers. Alongside this obstacle, higher Stamp Duty changes are finally making their mark upon the top end of the market.”
London remains the most difficult place for first-time buyers to get on the ladder, with small-deposit borrowing constituting just 7% of total house purchase lending, compared to 21% in the Midlands.