View more on these topics

Remortgage business increases in July

The Council of Mortgage Lenders has seen an increase in remortgage business in July, up 14% in volume and 16% in value from June.

The CML says remortgage business increased in July and mortgage business levelled off but first-time buyers are still struggling to get loans.

In July there were 47,400 house purchase loans worth £7.1bn – unchanged from June – but a 51% fall by volume and 54% by value from July 2007.

The trade body says there were 85,000 remortgage loans worth £11.9bn in July, up 14% in volume and 16% in value from June and that the number of loans to first-time buyers declined to 17,300 in July, down 48% from July 2007 and 5% from June 2008.

It says loans to first-time buyers have declined in the face of tighter lending criteria, as well as the wait-and-see approach now evident in an environment of reduced house prices.

Michael Coogan, director-general of the CML, says: “Tighter lending criteria have clearly made it more difficult for first-time buyers to enter the market. The Stamp Duty and shared equity measures announced by the government last week will be helpful to those first-time buyers looking to enter now, but many may be waiting for house prices to stabilise.

“Restoring the flow of funding to the mortgage market is crucial to helping the housing market recovery and we look forward to the findings of the Crosby Review at the end of the month.”

The CML has found the average first-time buyer had a deposit of 15% in July, up from 13% in June, bringing LTVs down to levels not seen since the early 1980s.

First-time buyers typically borrowed 3.24 x income, down from 3.33 in June and the lowest multiple since July 2006.


Government plans avoid the big issue

The government’s package of measures to boost the housing market is welcome but fails to address the central problem – lack of liquidity in the market, says Mark Harris

Overhaul Stamp Duty, say experts

Industry figures have called for a root and branch reform of Stamp Duty in response to the government’s tax holiday for properties valued at £175,000 and below.Last week Prime Minister Gordon Brown unveiled his mortgage rescue plan, which included a £50,000 increase in the Stamp Duty threshold for 12 months from September 3.But the Association […]

Fees glorious fees

Yesterday I spent most of the day at the Royal Bank of Scotland Roadshow in London where among the speakers were Grenville Turner, group chief executive of Countrywide and Phil Spencer of Location, Location,
Location fame.

Auto-enrolment: tips for employers

The Pensions Regulator (TPR) has released advice on communications for employers, including three tips to help you with your auto-enrolment duties. 1. Allow enough time to select your pension schemeIt’s recommended that you start to prepare for auto-enrolment at least 12 months in advance of your staging date; additionally, give yourself time to choose the […]


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up