The buy to let and first-time buyer sectors saw the average purchase price for both reduced, as did the average buy-to-let (BTL) purchase loan size, however even these movements were marginal rather than significant.
The average purchase loan stood at £169,762 in January, broadly similar to December 2018 when it stood at £170,228. However, it decreased by 1.9% on January 2018 when it stood at £172,990.
Average remortgages stood at £176,187 in January, but rose by 3.6% on January 2018 from £170,102.
Average BTL purchase loans decreased by 2.48% to £123,738 in January this year from £126,895 in December 2018 and by 4.75% on January 2018 to £129,917.
The biggest drop in the average value of loans for property purchase was in London, while in the East of England this figure rose by nearly 23 per cent from £138,819 to £170,322 over the same time frame.
Brian Murphy, head of lending for Mortgage Advice Bureau (pictured), said that there is plenty of steam left in the market in parts of the country, albeit that other areas are perhaps seeing some potential movers taking the ‘wait and see’ approach until there is more clarity around the current political situation.
He added: “This has led to reports of shortages of stock in some areas, as vendors who would like to move are also holding on until such time as the market in their area improves, providing a degree of insulation for values even where there are fewer buyers who are currently active.
He continued that with so many lenders entering the final quarter of their financial year in January, the market saw a raft of new and highly competitive rates as fixed-term product pricing fell to near-historically low levels.
“Overall, it would seem that pent-up demand is building in many areas, due to the number of well-intentioned buyers and sellers who had hoped that the political uncertainty would have abated by now.
“Therefore, whilst market sentiment may be one of caution in some areas for the short-term, the mid to longer-term view could well be more optimistic once we have a Brexit denouement.”