Housing market withstands economic pressures


The Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) believes that the UK housing market has withstood the current economic pressures well.

In a statement that followed last week’s publication of the Bank of England’s data on mortgage approvals in October, the Council described the figures as “good news” for consumers.

Sue Anderson, the head of member and external relations at the CML, acknowledged that there had been a slowdown but pointed out that the figures were fairly typical for the time of year.

In October the value of mortgage approvals for house purchase fell to £6.8 billion, as compared with £8.3 billion in September.

According to the CML this is not the dramatic reduction forecast by some organisations, such as the British Bankers’ Association.

The approval figures are seen as a gauge of future demand and while Ms Anderson agrees that the slowdown “reflects a mixture of what we’ve been expecting to happen at this point in the year anyway” she believes the market “is more robust than doomsters have been predicting”.

However, the number of mortgages approved in the UK had already fallen to a two-year low in September with 102,000 new home-loans approved, down from the 108,000 mortgages agreed in August.

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