Mortgage lending slips 5%
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by Gill Montia
Gross mortgage lending in June totalled £11.9 billion, according to the Council of Mortgage Lenders, representing a 5% fall from both the previous month and a year earlier.
Lending in the first half of 2012 totalled £67.9 billion, or 7% more than the first six months of 2011, but the stamp duty concession that ended in March was responsible for a short-term spike in the figures.
CML chief economist, Bob Pannell, comments: “Weaker mortgage lending in June points to a more subdued tone for the housing market in line with that for the wider economy.”
Meanwhile, more Britons are expecting house prices to rise rather than fall over the coming year, according to the latest housing market confidence survey from Halifax.
Just over a third of people surveyed expect property values to increase compared to almost one fifth expecting further house price falls.
However, confidence has slipped slightly since March, reflecting increased uncertainty regarding the economic outlook.
More than a half of respondents highlighted the challenges in raising a deposit and concerns about job security as the main barriers to buying a home.
They also picked out household finances and the general availability of mortgages as major hurdles to home buying.
Looking ahead, Halifax housing economist, Martin Ellis, says: “Overall, we expect little change in prices and sales over the remainder of the year provided that the UK’s economic outlook does not deteriorate significantly.”
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