However the figure is down 2% compared with March last year, and lending for the whole first quarter of this year was down 11% on the last quarter of 2010. February this year was particularly bad – the second lowest point in mortgage lending in a decade!
The reality is that lenders’ over-cautious restrictions in lending are still holding back the market. At Limetree we meet plenty of people who would like to get a mortgage, or remortgage, but who are prevented because they cannot meet all the lenders’ criteria – some of which are utterly bizarre.
Lending may have risen 21% overall but there is still a pent-up demand. Buyer’s appetite for borrowing is not being met by the banks’ desire to lend.
We hope that lending continues to rise, and that lenders adjust their criteria. That would be the real good news for the market in general – and for first-time buyers in particular.
If you are looking for a mortgage, don’t be put off by the statistics. At Limetree we will do everything we can to help you meet lenders’ criteria and secure the loan you need for your next move.