An increase in remortgage and gross mortgage lending along with increased uptake of the Right to Buy scheme are continuing to reinvigorate the housing market.
In July remortgage lending rose 12.7% from £3.7bn to £4.2bn, the highest gross lending figure for this time of year since 2008. Andy Knee, Chief Executive at LMS, said: “Following subdued remortgage activity in June this month’s figures show a significant boost, with both gross remortgage lending and the number of remortgages both increasing significantly. In fact, the total remortgage lending figure marks the most successful July we have seen since 2008.”
Total gross mortgage lending in July increased to £16.6 billion, up 12% from £14.8 billion in June. The figures from the Council of Mortgage Lenders showed an increase of 29% from the total of £12.9 billion at the same time last year.The figure is the highest monthly estimate for gross lending since October 2008 (£18.6 billion).
CML market and data analyst Caroline Purdey said: “An improvement in sentiment and activity continues to show in the UK housing and mortgage markets, with a more positive picture also starting to emerge in the economy. Our forward estimate of gross mortgage lending in July reinforces a growing evidence base of a strengthening in the housing and mortgage markets.”
The latest figures from the Department for Communities and Local Government show that 2,149 properties were sold between April and June this year. Compared to the 443 sold during the same period in 2012. The total number of council homes sold under the Right to Buy scheme is now over 8,000. The sales have generated £129 million in gross income, with the money to be recycled back into development of new affordable homes.
Housing Minister Mark Prisk said: “I’m delighted that thousands of council tenants are seizing the opportunity to purchase their home through the reinvigorated Right to Buy.
“However, many councils still need to do more to bring the scheme to the attention of their eligible tenants.”