Leeds ups mortgage lending and profits
The society’s profits increased by a substantial 42% in the first half of 2015 to £55m, up from £38.6m last year.
The society lent £1.45bn in the first half of 2015, up from £1.19bn. With the influx of new mortgages its net lending reached £668m, up from £446m in 2014.
Leeds catered for 4,500 first-time buyers, who made up 37.3% of its total lending in the first half the year.
Peter Hill, chief executive of Leeds Building Society, said: “We anticipate a modest increase in the size of the mortgage market for 2015 and expect competition for new business to intensify as established lenders and new entrants look to build market share.”
“We continue to be active in supporting borrowers who are not well-served by the wider market, through initiatives including shared ownership and the Government’s Help to Buy equity scheme.”
Comparing the start of this year to the last, Leeds upped its assets by £12.1bn to £12.7bn.
The society’s charge for impairment losses fell by £17.8m to £5.5m and its levels of residential mortgage arrears fell from 2.12% to 1.62%.
In the first half of the year the society upgraded its IT systems and recruited 120 new members of staff, bringing the number of Leeds employees to 1,224.
Hill added: “We are pressing on with our investment in the society, its people and systems to continue growing the business in a strong and sustainable way.
“Almost 18% of colleagues are aged under 25 and our ambitious recruitment targets include the expansion of our successful apprenticeship scheme.
“We are pleased so many talented young people choose to start their careers with the society and all colleagues, including apprentices, earn at least the living wage.”