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Lending rockets as buy-to-let boosts market

Written by: Christina Hoghton
House purchase approvals were up 20% between December and January, fuelled by the buoyant buy-to-let sector.

Growth in buy-to-let has boosted the overall lending market, with total purchase approvals in January reaching their highest level for nine years, according to a new survey by chartered surveyors e.surv.

It noted that the surge in buy-to-let lending ahead of the looming tax changes for landlords in April, means January saw 85,432 house purchase approvals. This was up a significant 20.6% from 70,837 house purchase approvals in December, and up 39.3% over the last year.

After a consistent run of annual increases, this yearly spike in house purchase lending signals the short-term impact of a surge in buy-to-let borrowing. This has happened at the same time that the overall lending market is also performing strongly, boosting total lending.

Richard Sexton, director of e.surv chartered surveyors, said: “Concerns about the sector’s growth have sparked a wave of legislation but as Stamp Duty changes come into effect this April, there’s been a rush to get buy-to-let loans approved. Many have predicted a narrowing of the buy-to-let sector but actually what we’re seeing in lending quarters appears to be the opposite.”

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