Charles Haresnape, managing director of Aldermore Bank said the outlook for the market had hugely improved, with the Funding for Lending Scheme (FLS) injecting liquidity into the industry.
“Net lending is also increasing from £8bn to maybe £10 to £11bn next year,” added Haresnape.
Mark Snape from GE Money also agreed that £145-150bn looked possible next year largely a result of the FLS.
Barclays’ Sarah Green, Richard Tugwell from Virgin Money and Ralph Evans from Halifax Intermediaries put in more conservative estimates, topping out at £145bn.
Under questioning on why lenders continue to hold the conservative line on interest-only, GE Money’s Snape said lenders could make criteria changes to open up the market again.
Haresnape said lenders had taken a “full flight to cover” on this issue but said he thought a solid market for interest-only remained, as long as it was “done in the correct way.”
An attendee from the audience asked the panel when they planned to bring self-employed lending back into the 21st century.
Some of the panel agreed a policy review was overdue. Haresnape said most lenders have become more flexible adding that contractors in the same line as previously had seen far softer criteria.
Virgin said following the narrowing of criteria, lenders and brokers needed to work together to forge a greater understanding of what clients need and extend lending policies again.