First-time buyer mortgage completion rate at three-year high

Ryan Bembridge

March 12, 2019

kate davies imla

The first-time buyer mortgage completion rate reached a 3-year high in the fourth quarter of 2018, IMLA’s Mortgage Market Tracker has found.

In Q4 89% of first-time buyer mortgage offers went to completion, up from 81% in Q3 and 69% three years ago.

Kate Davies (pictured), executive director of the Intermediary Mortgage Lenders Association (IMLA), said: “It is encouraging to see that when an intermediary does apply for a loan on their client’s behalf, they are being accepted and completed at growing rates.

“Mortgages going from offers to completions are at more than three-year highs as intermediaries and lenders continue to find solutions for clients.

“It’s significant that intermediaries are able to demonstrate such a high success rate, especially when helping first-time buyers to navigate the complexities of an increasingly competitive and complex mortgage market.

“This is particularly true for those taking out Help to Buy equity loans, who may need even more expert guidance.”

IMLA previously predicted that mortgage lending via intermediaries will rise to £169bn this year as the share of lending introduced by intermediaries rises to 75% in 2019 and 76% by 2020.

Davies added: “During times of uncertainty, people still seek out a seasoned expert to help guide them through complex financial decisions.

“That said, even in the face of such strong evidence about brokers’ effectiveness, it’s not surprising that brokers themselves share the current general uncertainty about the future.

“But, whatever the outcome of the current Brexit negotiations, we are confident that brokers will continue to play an essential part in guiding borrowers through the market.”

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