BoE: Purchase approvals fall again

Sarah Davidson

December 1, 2014

This is their lowest month level since June 2013, and compares to 61,234 in September, 64,072 in August, 65,991 in July and 66,734 in June.

Remortgaging fared slightly better month-on-month, as approvals climbed to 31,238 in October compared to 30,639 in September.

Overall approvals dropped below 100,000 in October for the first time since May 2014, standing at 99,707 in October, down from 101,143 in September and 105,957 in August.

Richard Sexton, director of e.surv chartered surveyors, said: “The introduction of further regulation in the form of loan to income caps in early October has taken some of the wind out of first-time buyers’ sails.

“The increasingly rigorous testing may have seemed daunting to prospective homeowners – a negative image has likely had a dampening effect on the real positive influence of MMR and Help-to-Buy.

“In addition, those who have seen regulation for the vital tool it is have started to buy up the existing stock of starter homes.”

He added: “It is not enough merely to tinker with the financial conditions of first-time buyers and those that lend to them with schemes like MMR or Help to Buy – especially if these necessary checks and balances are misconstrued by the very people they are meant to assist.

“In some areas of the country we’re approaching a situation where if more houses aren’t built, more houses can’t be sold.”

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