January 27, 2022

UK: Industry reacts to latest mortgage figures

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From James Lockett ProperPR

Industry reaction to this morning’s mortgage approval figures from the Bank of England.

The latest data from the Bank of England shows that: –

  • Mortgage approvals just tipped 67,000 in October. 
  • This is a decline from 71,851 on the previous month.
  • However, they remain above the pre-Covid averages for 2018 (65,049) and 2019 (65,715).
  • They are also only marginally lower than the five year monthly average of 68,759 (Since October 2016).

Director of Henry Dannell, Geoff Garrett, commented:

“A significant drop in mortgage approval levels may seem like cause for concern but it’s important to view this movement within the context of the recent market landscape. The temptation of a stamp duty saving spurred many homebuyers to enter the market earlier than they may have otherwise and so a decline following the final deadline was only to be expected.

However, the level of mortgage approvals seen in October actually remains marginally higher than the annual levels seen pre-Covid in both 2019 and 2018 and so what we’re seeing is a return to normality rather than an exodus of buyer activity.”

Managing Director of Sirius Property Finance, Nicholas Christofi, commented:

“The combination of a stamp duty holiday wind down and, more recently, premature fears around an increase in interest rates, were both widely predicted to dent mortgage approval levels towards the back end of this year. So today’s figures will come as no surprise to anyone.

They certainly aren’t a reason to panic and mortgage approval levels in October are only marginally lower than the monthly average seen over the last five years. While an increase in rates is likely to materialise early next year, the cost of borrowing will remain very low and so we don’t anticipate any significant drop in buyer demand as a result.”

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