A combination of low-interest rates on mortgages as well as end of your deals from lenders has helped push up mortgage approvals in September according to the latest Finance Monitor Report. Mortgage approvals were up 0.7% compared to the previous month (August) and 0.6% year on year. The total number of mortgage completions in September was 65,997.
This latest increase is part of an upward trend in mortgage approvals which has gathered pace in 2019. Despite uncertainty over the UK’s future relationship with the EU, the mortgage market has proved resilient even if the housing market itself has suffered a dip. This month, house prices have risen by their lowest rate in the month of October since the financial crisis according to Rightmove.
For those thinking of purchasing a property, the current conditions point towards a buyers’ market with banks continuing to offer low-interest rate mortgages and property prices stalling. Bank swap rates have also remained low in recent months which has helped lenders offer more attractive products to applicants and various deals. All this will have tempted more buyers onto the market and with employment rates high and wage inflation, the outlook remains positive for first-time buyers and those looking to re-mortgage.
The number of mortgages where a small deposit was used made up 28.7% of mortgages – up by 0.4% on the previous month. Re-mortgages contributed slightly less to overall mortgage approval figures but still saw an increase from 26.6% of mortgages to 27.9% in the same period. Small deposit borrowers are in the minority in England with only Yorkshire, The North West and The Midlands seeing them outstripping large deposit borrowers.
While mortgage approvals are up for first-time buyers it remains the case that for those with small deposits the best option is to look beyond the major cities such as London where larger deposit buyers continue to dominate.
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