Gross mortgage figures published

Gross mortgage figures published

The Council of Mortgage Lenders has revealed gross mortgage lending in June totalled £11.9 billion, representing a 5% fall both from the May (£12.5 billion) and June 2011 (£12.6 billion).

Gross lending for the second quarter of 2012 was an estimated £34.2 billion, a 2% increase from the first quarter of the year (£33.6 billion) and a 3% increase from the second quarter of 2011 (£33.3 billion).

Lending in the first six months of the year totalled £67.9 billion.

This is 7% higher than the first six months of 2011 (£63.7 billion).

David Newnes, director of LSL Property Services said: “It is encouraging that lending picked up during July, despite the recession and the Eurozone crisis haunting financial markets and undermining lender confidence – but the increase has more to do with a subdued June than a sudden improvement on the ground for new borrowers.”

CML chief economist Bob Pannell said: "Mortgage lending has experienced something of a see-saw pattern over recent months, largely reflecting the short-term spike and subsequent trough in house purchase activity associated with the ending of the stamp duty concession for first-time buyers in late March.”

David Whittaker, managing director of Mortgages for Business, backed up this sentiment saying: “So far this year, growth in overall mortgage lending has been as consistent as a rolling rugby ball.

“These figures are the latest of a series of unpredictable peaks and troughs which show precious few signs of significant recovery for the market as a whole.

“In contrast, buy to let lending has been relatively healthy over this period with seven straight months of growth.

“But buy to let is only one of the pillars which supports a healthy lending market and cannot carry the weight of the sector in isolation.

“Until we see significant improvement in the strength of the other elements of the lending market we’ll continue to see the rugby ball bounce we’ve grown so accustomed to over the last few years.”

CML said the launch of the funding for lending scheme (FLS) will help guard against a contraction in lending over the next 18 months.

However Mr Newnes added: “Pressure is mounting on the Funding for Lending scheme to boost activity in the lower tiers of the market, but there is no guarantee that lending will be diverted to those without substantial equity.

“Lending needs to focus on helping meet the needs of those lower down in the housing market if serious change is to emerge.”

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