Separate figures from the Bank of England show that gross mortgage lending in the first quarter of 2018 was £61.1 billion, up 3.4 percent from £59.0 billion in the first quarter of 2017.

Key data highlights:

  • There was £5.1bn of new lending to first-time buyers in the month, up two percent year-on-year. 31,200 new first-time buyer mortgages were completed in the month, some 1.9 percent fewer than in the same month a year earlier. The average first-time buyer is 30 and has a gross household income of £42,000.
  • There was £6.1bn of new lending to homemovers in the month, 4.7 percent down year-on-year. There were 28,400 new homemover mortgages completed in the month, some 7.8 per cent fewer than in the same month a year earlier. The average homemover is 39 and has a gross household income of £56,000.
  • The £5.6bn of remortgaging in the month was 9.7 per cent down year-on-year. There were 32,400 new homeowner remortgages completed in the month, some 12 per cent fewer than in the same month a year earlier.
  • There were 5,500 new buy-to-let home purchase mortgages completed in the month, some 19.1 per cent fewer than in the same month a year earlier. By value this was £0.8bn of lending in the month, 20 per cent down year-on-year. UK Finance research suggests the recent softening of the buy-to-let market is mostly down to a number of recent tax and regulatory changes including the limiting of landlords’ Mortgage Interest Tax Relief (MITR), the three per cent Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) surcharge and new underwriting requirements introduced by the Prudential Regulatory Authority (PRA).
  • There were 12,600 new buy-to-let remortgages completed in the month, some 0.8 per cent more than in the same month a year earlier. By value this was £2.0bn of lending in the month, the same year-on-year.

Commenting on the data, Jackie Bennett, Director of Mortgages at UK Finance, said “Remortgaging levels softened in March, after a busier than usual start to the year saw customers locking into attractive deals ahead of a potential interest rate rise.There has been relatively flat growth in lending to first-time buyers, reflecting recent Bank of England figures showing a fall in mortgage approvals.”

“Meanwhile the buy-to-let market remains subdued, as recent tax and regulatory changes continue to have an impact on demand.”

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