Lending to FTBs at five and a half year high!

The number of loans advanced to first-time buyers in May was at its highest level since November 2007, according to figures released today by the Council of Mortgage Lenders.

Transaction numbers increased 41.8% from 17,700 in May 2012 to 25,100 in May 2013. The last time lenders advanced more loans to first-time buyers was in November 2007, when a total of 28,900 loans were advanced to borrowers looking to get on the housing ladder. The total value of all first time buyer lending was £3.4bn in May, up 54% on the £2.2bn advanced in the same month last year.

The number of loans to first-time buyers in May was up 29.3 per cent from 19,400 in April, while the total value of lending was up 36 per cent from £2.5bn. There are signs emerging that lenders are starting to lend at higher LTVs as the average first-time buyer LTV ratio rose from 81% in April to 83% in May, the highest level since November 2008.

CML director general Paul Smee says: “Although monthly lending is still running at far less than half its typical monthly level during the peak, there is no doubt that the mortgage market is firmly open for business. Both the borrowing appetite of first-time buyers, and the availability of attractive mortgages for them, has improved markedly since a year ago.”