Roberts (pictured) said the market consensus was that 2020 would finish on gross mortgage lending of around £220bn but L&G felt that lending could fall within the £220bn to £230bn range, with high hopes of the market achieving the top end of that estimation.
Six of the top ten lenders shared their views of where gross lending would land at the end of the year with L&G for TMPE2020.
Two lenders forecast less than £210bn, one lender predicted close to £220bn and three forecast £230bn.
Speaking to intermediaries online this morning, Roberts said: “Looking at those numbers, I think we will end the year between £220bn to £230bn and I am perhaps a little bit more optimistic that we might get towards £230bn.”
Advisers largely unaffected
However, even if the pandemic-stricken market does reach £230bn by the end of the year, it will still be lagging around 15 per cent behind 2019’s gross mortgage lending of £266bn.
“We are going to see the market shrink this year despite record volumes and I don’t think they are going to make up for what we missed out in late spring,” said Roberts.
However, the intermediary channel is not expected to be seriously affected by the contraction in lending.
Lenders have told Roberts they expect to see the advisers’ share of mortgage business hold up well.
“They are seeing an awful lot of business not coming through branches, for obvious reasons, and through the direct channels,” he said.
Roberts added: “Better news for advisers, we may may not feel the full impact of that lowering of lending but all the same it looks like we are in for a smaller year.”
Most lenders are predicting 2021 “will be of a similar ilk”, he said.