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Bank of England data shows mortgage market slowdown

Written by: Owain Thomas
Approvals for house purchase and remortgaging loans fell further in April, according to data from the Bank of England.

A total of 118,370 loans for house purchase and remortgage were approved in April, down from 127,745 in January.

Remortgaging was hardest hit (down 11%) with house purchase loans slightly less badly affected (down 6%). (See table)

The drops were another indication of the slowing property market around the country since the start of 2017.

Perhaps encouragingly, gross mortgage lending was £21.3bn for April, up slightly on the previous month (£20.9bn) and the six-month average (£20.6bn).


Not unexpected

The falls were not unexpected considering the snap general election and ongoing Brexit uncertainty, said Jonathan Sealey, CEO of Hope Capital, a bridging loan company.

“It’s promising to see that gross mortgage lending in April was higher than the six-month average, suggesting that the UK’s housing market has once again remained steady.

“The months and weeks that precede such an event [the election] are typically and understandably quieter, as housing demand drops as more people adopt a more cautious approach.

“However, it is likely that activity will soon again pick up afterwards, and now that the main political parties have outlined significant housing promises in their manifestos, the elected government must follow through with their housing election pledges in order to tackle the housing crisis head on.”

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