Lending to first-time buyers hits 10-year high

Mortgage lending to first-time buyers hit a 10-year high in March this year, research from the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) shows.

While the number of people moving home decreased year-on-year compared to March 2016, first-time buyers received more loans this year than in any month of March since 2007.

According to the CML, first-time buyers borrowed £4.9 billion to get on the property ladder in March 2017 – up 29% in February and 9% on March 2016.

First-time buyers took out 31,500 loans, up 30% month-on-month and 12% year-on-year.

On lending in the first quarter, the CML’s research showed:

  • first-time buyers borrowed £12.3 billion for home purchases, down 13% on Q4 2016 but up 10% on Q1 2016
  • 78,300 loans were taken out, down 13% quarter-on-quarter but up 10% year-on-year.

Paul Smee, director general of the CML, said:

“The relatively sluggish activity among home-movers stands in contrast to the growth in first-time buyer and remortgage activity, but on aggregate the market is showing broadly the levels of activity we expected.

“As we head into the summer, both first-time buyer and remortgage lending [are] expected to maintain momentum in the light of the very attractive deals currently available.”

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