Mortgage Brain: ESIS volumes stable but product numbers down

Jessica Bird

June 18, 2020

UK property market recovery

For the seventh consecutive week, statistics from Mortgage Brain have shown an increase in the volume of European Standardised Information Sheets (ESIS) being produced. 

Last week saw a 2.4% increase on the week before, leaving ESIS volumes only 8.5% lower than pre-pandemic levels.

However, the number of mortgage products available to borrowers fell last week for the first time since April, following five weeks of consistent rises.

Product numbers dropped by 3% to a total of 8,746.

This is still 17.8% above the lowest point seen since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, which was in the week ending 12 April.

However, it remains down by 40.4% on the pre-lockdown nine-week average to 16 March.

This reduction is in some part down to lenders removing higher loan-to-value (LTV) products.

While lending between 85% and 90% LTV fell by 4.4% on the previous week, lending between 80% and 85% increased by the same margin.

Lending above 90% remained level and represented just 1.3% of the ESIS generated on Mortgage Brain’s sourcing systems, sharply down on the 6.6% average seen before the pandemic.

The LTV business mix below 80% has returned to the same levels seen before the crisis hit.

Mark Lofthouse, CEO at Mortgage Brain, said: “The mortgage market has enjoyed quite the turnaround in the last six weeks, with product numbers and ESIS volumes in a far healthier position today than many would have dared imagine.

“While overall product numbers have dropped slightly, this is to be expected as lenders constantly review their ranges and get a feel for the lay of the land in this new normal.

“This is clearly the case at the higher LTV end of the market, which represents a far smaller proportion of business now than we saw before the pandemic took hold.

“Hopefully we will see the health of this segment of the market improve in time as lender appetite grows.”

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