Slight rise in September mortgage approvals
Latest figures from the British Bankers’ Association (BBA) show that the number of mortgages approved for house purchases rose slightly during September.
According to the seasonally adjusted data 23,422 loans were sanctioned by Britain’s banks and building societies, 10% more than in August (when approvals hit a record low of 21,342) but 57% fewer than in September 2007.
Last month’s remortgage approvals were also up slightly from a month earlier, at 51,523 (47,260).
Net mortgage lending (gross lending minus redemptions and repayments) rose to £3.6 billion, up from £2.1 billion in August.
September’s net total compares with a six-month average of £4.1 billion and a sum of £6.4 billion for the same period of 2007.
The BBA says it was not surprising that lending levels remained low in September, despite the Government’s decision to suspend stamp duty for purchases of £175,000 and below.
The Association’s statistics director, David Dooks, comments that the UK mortgage market is being reshaped by a restricted supply of mortgages and reduced demand.
In addition, the market is becoming more concentrated, with High Street banks now providing over two-thirds of all new lending.
Last month, the average mortgage approved for house purchases by BBA members stood at £128,000, having fallen by over £30,000 since June 2007.