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House purchase borrowing down 7% in September

Written by: Christina Hoghton
Borrowers got the Brexit blues in September but lending is still up over the last year.

Homeowners borrowed £11.4bn for house purchase in September according to the Council of Mortgage Lenders, down 7% month-on-month but up 4% year-on-year. They took out 62,900 loans, down 5% on August but up 3% on September 2015.

Both first-time buyer and home mover borrowing fell during the month, by 4% and 9% respectively, although both were up by double figures over the year.

Remortgage activity totalled £5.5bn, down 7% on August but up 8% compared to a year ago.

Paul Smee, director general of the CML, said: “House purchase activity appears to have steadied, we may not be seeing huge increases in activity on the scale of 2013-14 but there is a consistency in the levels in recent months. Mortgage affordability reached an historic low in September, for both first-time buyer and home movers, which partly reflects the re-pricing of mortgages following August’s base rate cut. This should help turn strong appetite for home-ownership into a reality as we approach the closing months of the year.”

Andrew Fisher, managing director at Freedom Finance, added: “Today’s figures are the first to show the impact of the UK’s Brexit result on the UK mortgage market. The drop in the number of completions clearly shows how borrowers reacted to the referendum result which was with caution and potential concern for the future of the UK housing market.”

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