Experian: Mortgage enquiries return to pre-lockdown levels

Jessica Bird

June 11, 2020

Demand for mortgages has returned to pre-lockdown levels, according to analysis by Experian. 

Mortgage searches via Experian’s comparison service leading to an enquiry, were up 57% for May compared with April, and showed similar volumes to January.

As the UK lockdown meant the housing market was largely on hold in March, mortgage enquiries fell by 17% compared to February.

A drop of the same amount occurred in April, which in normal years is a peak month for applications, recording the lowest levels of mortgage activity so far in 2020.

However, remortgage activity remained relatively constant, accounting for 16% of  mortgage enquiries in the first six weeks of lockdown.

Mortgage product availability fell by 39% in March from February.

Amir Goshtai, managing director of Experian Marketplace, said: “We have seen mortgage enquiries soar since the easing of lockdown restrictions and the reopening of the housing market.

“What we’re seeing is a ‘double release’ of pent-up demand from political uncertainty last year and lockdown this year.

“The lockdown has got many people reflecting about their lives – their daily commute, working arrangements and home environment – and so people are now looking to see what is available on the market and what they can afford that better matches what’s important to them.

“As people resume looking for their home, they should explore their mortgage options fully.

“While mortgage product availability is not quite back to pre-lockdown levels, we are slowly seeing lenders reintroduce products back to market.

“Comparison services such as Experian’s enable people to compare current market offers and get an idea of their affordability and eligibility.

“They can also get a good idea of what their monthly repayments may be and all without damaging their credit score.”

Sign up to our daily email