June see fall in house purchase lending activity

June see fall in house purchase lending activity

Loan approvals for house purchase numbered 64,766 in June, compared to the average of 69,998 over the previous six months, the Bank of England has reported.

Approvals for remortgaging numbered 43,102, compared to the average of 41,592 over the previous six months. Meanwhile, approvals for other purposes numbered 12,347, broadly in line with the average over the previous six months.

Peter Williams, executive director of the Intermediary Mortgage Lenders Association, (IMLA), said: “Caution was the watchword in June, as uncertainty in the run-up to Brexit rocked the housing market. Unsurprisingly, house purchase lending activity fell back, with many buyers choosing to wait out the vote and see if the result would land in their favour.

“Bucking the wider market trend, the remortgage market continued in fine form in June, with homeowners making the most of the competitive rates available and switching to better deals. Some of these remortgagers will be landlords looking to counteract the added tax burdens handed to them in recent month from the SDLT reforms, changes to the wear and tear allowance, and the upcoming squeeze on interest relief. Others will be homeowners looking for a boost to their finances while wage increases remain lacklustre.

“The political upheaval may have knocked the confidence of some, but beneath the caution is a sturdy base of borrowers who want to move home or get on the ladder. However, our research shows that 2.2 million first-time buyers dropped out of the market between 2007 and 2015. This highlights what should be an area of focus for the new government: supporting homeownership by ensuring the high LTV sector remains a priority.”