Lender approvals surge in July

Lenders approved more mortgages in July than in any other month since January 2014, new figures from the Bank of England show.

According to the latest money and credit figures, there were 11,766 approvals in July – an 8 per cent year-on-year increase on July 2014.

Purchase approvals were up 5.3 per cent annually to 68,764, while remortgage and further advances were up 16 per cent and 2 per cent to 38,042 and 10,855 respectively.

Gross lending was up 10.8 per cent year-on-year to £18.4bn.

Mortgage Advice Bureau head of lending Brian Murphy says: “Mortgage approvals continued to climb in July, with the number of approvals for remortgage in particular seeing a significant annual increase. Bargain basement mortgage rates are attracting borrowers in their droves and many are keen to lock in to record-low pricing before interest rates rise. 

“Not only do remortgagers stand to make significant savings by switching to a competitive deal but many are in a strong position to cash in on the rising value of their home. Our own analysis shows that the average remortgage loan has reached a new post-recession high, with typical loan-to-values also increasing. 

“Savvy borrowers are therefore increasingly making the most of house price rises by releasing money from their homes.”

E.surv business development director Richard Sexton says: “The mortgage market has overcome the hurdles of regulatory changes and economic pressures, and lending is approaching post-recession record levels. 

“The remortgage sector is moving from strength to strength as homeowners look to capitalise on the cheap rates available.

“This remortgage revival, together with a combination of gradual wage growth and low inflation, is shoring up house purchase lending and encouraging new homebuyers.”