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Mortgage approvals up on last year

The number of mortgage approvals has increased in the year to February according to new data from e.surv.

According to the report, the number of loans increased by 3.8% compared to February 2018, with the proportion of mortgage approvals for buyers with small deposits remaining high.

Director of e.surv, Richard Sexton commented on the results that: ‘While confidence has fallen in the housing market due to economic and political turbulence, the mortgage market continues to grow.

“Existing homeowners are able to lock into cheap fixed-rate deals while first-time buyers are being helped by more generous criteria being offered by banks and building societies.

“Raising a deposit remains a challenge for young borrowers, but there are more products being launched which are targeting those with little cash to spare.”

The mid-market saw the greatest increase in terms of activity during the month, growing from 44.8% to 46.8%, whilst there was a small comparative fall in first-time and large deposit buyers.

Continued buoyancy in early-year market

It’s been a positive start to 2019 for the UK property market on a whole, fending off well the current political uncertainty with ‘pent-up demand’ helping boost Spring sales and completions.

Data from Halifax suggested that house prices saw a record average price increase in February, up 5.9% on top of what was already a positive January. Year-on-year the report suggested a 2.8% annual rise.

Albeit one of the more optimistic recent market surveys, the data showcases sustained demand whilst mortgage approvals are also on the up.

Read more: Spring property market warms up as house prices see record monthly rise

First-time buyers, in particular, have been noted as the spearhead of the market’s continued growth, whilst for middle-market buyers such as second-steppers, an improvement in average wages has helped boost buyer affordability across the board.