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February house purchase approvals rise 26% year-on-year – BoE

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  • 31/03/2016
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February house purchase approvals rise 26% year-on-year – BoE
Mortgage approvals for house purchases rose by 26% year-on-year in February to 73,871 with the value of loans rising from £10.3bn to £13bn, Bank of England statistics show.

Remortgage business also rose year-on-year in February. The number of remortgage loans approved increased by 24% from 32,755 to 40,749 and 38% in value from £5.3bn to £7.3bn.

Despite positive yearly trends, both lending categories dipped in value and volume compared to the previous month.

The value of house purchase lending dropped by 5% from £13.7bn in January while transaction levels fell slightly by 0.2% from 74,085. Remortgage business volumes decreased by just over 1,000 deals compared to January and by value, approvals dropped from £7.4bn.

Gross lending month-on-month remained static in February at £21bn but increased 31% from £16bn in February 2015.

Richard Sexton, director of chartered surveyor e.surv, said: “The start of the year has seen a sustained momentum in house purchase lending, fuelled by the force of buy to let. February in particular saw a surge of buy-to-let activity as a result of the race to beat Stamp Duty changes coming into force tomorrow.

“Many fear this driver for lending activity may die down after April and some fall-away appears likely. However, while buy to let may be taking a lead role in the lending market at the moment, small-deposit borrowing and remortgaging are also reaping the rewards of a warm economic climate.”

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