Still tough times for borrowers: MAB
Lending is still constrained and it is a challenging environment for potential homeowners, Brian Murphy, head of lending for London-based Mortgage Advice Bureau, has warned.
Speaking as the Building Societies Association published its latest lending data, Mr Murphy said: “Mortgage lending by mutuals has been the driving force behind much of the growth in 2012.
“Overall, it remains a challenging environment and funding remains constrained. Therefore, it is to be hoped the two new lending schemes announced by the Chancellor and the Bank of England are fully supported by lenders and money is passed directly on to businesses and consumers.”
According to the BSA figures, mortgage lending by building societies and other mutuals grew by 38 per cent in the first half of 2012.
At £14.1bn, gross lending grew by £3.9bn compared to the same period in 2011, while gross lending for June 2012 rose by 28 per cent to £2.7bn compared to last June, an increase of £0.6bn.
Mortgage approvals by mutuals grew by 45 per cent in the first six months of the year compared to the same period in 2011. In June, approvals were up by 35 per cent compared to the same month last year and were 20 per cent higher than the average over the previous six months.
Retail savings balances at mutuals increased by £639m during June, compared to a net withdrawal of £94 million in the same month last year.
Paul Broadhead, head of mortgage policy at the BSA said: “Lending by mutuals has grown in each month of 2012, year on year, and the June figures for mortgage approvals are above the previous six months’ average.
“They continue to look strong over the coming months, while growth in lending by banks over the past six months has been relatively weak.”