Mortgage lending by banks rises to 2008 levels

Christina Hoghton
Written By:
Christina Hoghton

January saw a post-recession high in mortgage lending from banks, as borrower appetite soared

Mortgage lending by banks in January shot up to its highest level in almost eight years, reaching a whopping £13.6bn, according to the latest figures out from the British Bankers’ Association (BBA).

This marks a 38% rise year-on-year, and is the highest monthly lending figure since the middle of 2008.

The number of mortgage approvals in January was 33% higher than a year ago, reaching 80,285. Broken down by transaction type, house purchase approvals accounted for 47,509 of overall agreed mortgages, representing a 27% rise on January 2015.

Remortgaging approvals came to 25,040, an increase of 42% year-on-year. The balance is made up of further advances secured against the home.

Richard Woolhouse, chief economist at the BBA, said: “The start of the year has seen a significant rise in mortgage borrowing. It seems that this has been driven, in part, by borrowers looking to get ahead of the increases in Stamp Duty for buy-to-let and second home buyers scheduled to come into effect in April.”

Brian Murphy, head of lending at Mortgage Advice Bureau (MAB), added: “For those who meet lenders’ criteria and are fortunate to afford a deposit, there have been few times like the present to borrow. Not only are rates extremely low, but consumers can also choose from a huge range of different mortgage products tailored to their individual needs.”

The Council of Mortgage Lenders’ data, also released today, which broke down house purchase lending by region and country showed activity in the Capital had suffered.

The number of mortgage transactions in the Capital fell 5% to 81,600 worth £24.5bn, but still a 1% value increase on 2014.

In London, first-time buyer loan numbers dropped 6% over the year, to 45,600 worth £11.6bn.