UK Finance: FTB mortgages at highest levels since 2007

Jessica Nangle

October 15, 2019

First-time buyer mortgages reached 35,010 in August 2019, the highest monthly total since August 2007 according to UK Finance’s Mortgage Trends Update.

The figures seen in August for first-time buyer mortgages represents a year-on-year increase of 0.7%.

Homemover mortgages saw a yearly decline of 5.5%, whilst new remortgages with additional borrowing also declines by 2.9%.

For these remortgages the average additional amount borrowed in August was £55,000, with 18,100 new pound-for-pound remortgages recorded during the month.

There were 5,900 new buy-to-let home purchase mortgages completed in August 2019 which is a year-on-year decline of 3.3%.

In addition there were 13,800 remortgages in the buy-to-let sector which is 0.7% fewer than in the same month in 2018.

Andrew Montlake, managing director at Coreco, said: “First-time buyers are absolutely flying.

“They are being driven on by a combination of reduced competition from landlords, once-in-a-lifetime mortgage rates, high employment and the buyers’ market we’re in.

“First-time buyers have been the one constant over the past couple of years and this latest data shows that there is still a huge amount of momentum at this end of the market.

“Despite a continued backdrop of political, economic and constitutional chaos, first-time buyers know that the conditions to buy are perfect.

“Those supported by the Bank of Mum and Dad are in an even better position.

“Many are also concerned that the market could turn against them if a Brexit deal is achieved and are buying now to avoid that scenario.”

Louisa Sedgwick, director of sales – mortgages at Vida Homeloans, added: “Today’s data shows a reasonable degree of resilience among the first-time buyer market.

“We know that first-time buyers across the country face can face different challenges depending on where they want to buy.

“Every mortgage tells a different story and it’s key that lenders listen and respond to the needs of borrowers.”

Kevin Roberts, director at Legal & General Mortgage Club, commented: “Britain has a healthy and resilient mortgage market.

“Competition amongst lenders has driven down rates to record low levels and thousands of homeowners are taking advantage of these deals to step onto the housing ladder or remortgage.

“In many instances, these borrowers are enlisting the support of a mortgage adviser.

“Whether it’s someone who is self-employed or an older homeowner who wants to unlock housing equity in retirement, these experts are helping people across the market to find a product which best fits their circumstances.”

Rob Barnard, sales director at Masthaven, added: “This summer has been encouraging for the mortgage market.

“Lending activity has remained steady and first-time buyers continue to reap the benefits of Help to Buy.

“Remortgagors are taking advantage of the competitive deals available with lenders intensifying competition in the market by offering innovative products to homeowners who would rather stay put than move in the current climate.

“However, affordability and complex financial circumstances still leave many customers unable to secure a mortgage.

“With Help to Buy coming to an end in 2023, the mortgage market needs to continue to provide innovative solutions to encourage individuals onto-and-up the property ladder.”

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