Mortgage approvals hit six-year high

The number of mortgage applications given the green light increased by 6,131 from March to April, the biggest jump in six years and an early sign that the UK housing market is bouncing back after a muted six months and disruption caused by the general election, reports The Telegraph.

Some 68,076 mortgages were granted in April for house purchase, compared with 61,945 in March – an increase of 9.9 per cent and the biggest monthly percentage change since April 2009.

April also saw 35,930 loans remortgaged, compared to the average of 32,308 over the previous six months. The number of approvals for other purposes was 10,623, compared to the average of 9,404 over the previous six months.

Martin Stewart, a director of independent mortgage broker London Money said he thought a combination of low mortgage rates and a stable jobs market would continue to have a positive effect on the market[1].

“While there is certainly more caution in the market at present than a year or so ago – among borrowers and lenders alike – mortgage rates are so competitive that they are inducing people to commit to a home purchase.

We’re finding that borrowers are a lot more confident, too. Low and now negative inflation has had a tangible impact on household finances and people feel more secure in their jobs. Coupled with a low interest rate environment and you have all the ingredients for a strengthening property market.[2]”

[1] Martin Stewart, Billy Ehrenberg, News Economics,
2 ibid