Despite industry experts predicting a more subdued year in the housing market, the Woolwich Mortgage Index has shown that UK gross lending levels last month were the highest ever recorded for a January since 1993. Confidence has increased with only 5% of those surveyed expecting a drop in house prices.
Andy Gray, head of mortgage products at the Woolwich, said: ‘The Woolwich is confident about the housing market and our figures show that confidence and optimism is building. Continually increasing confidence and high propensity to move home indicates customers are no longer uncertain about the prospects of the housing market.’
The index showed gross mortgage lending reached almost £13bn in January compared to £9.5bn the previous year.
The key findings of the Woolwich Mortgage Index showed that house price confidence is up 3% from January 2001, with 53% of people expecting house prices to increase over the next 12 months ‘ only 5% of people expect house prices to fall. A fifth of those surveyed plan to sell their home.