Applications totalled £7.6bn in the third quarter, representing a 25.7 per cent rise on the same period in 2019 and an increase of 39.1 per cent over the previous quarter.
Completions in Q3 2020 were £680m, an increase of 44.8 per cent on Q2, although still down by 27.6 per cent on the same period last year – as the market bounced back from the impact of the first lockdown.
Loan books increased 0.6 per cent on the previous quarter and five per cent on the same period last year – remaining at around £4.5bn. Average loan to values (LTVs) rose slightly since Q2, but continue to remain sub-60 per cent.
The value of loans in default showed a small increase of 3.3 per cent over Q2 2020 but were 23.1 per cent higher than the same period last year, as borrowers continued to feel the financial impact of the pandemic.
The figures were compiled by auditors from data provided by members of the trade body.
Speaking to Mortgage Solutions, Vic Jannels, chief executive of the ASTL, said: “The increase in demand for bridging is down to the versatility and speed that short term finance can offer in an uncertain environment.
“We know that many term lenders are running at long delays currently and so, for people who want to move quickly – perhaps to beat the deadline for the stamp duty holiday – bridging can prove a very useful product. There has been huge demand for bridging in recent months, and we expect this to continue.
“As always, the value of advice is crucial and we anticipate that any short term lending will be recommended only where it is absolutely the right option for a customer.”
Vic Jannels, added: “This has been a hugely busy period for bridging lending.
“If the recent positive news about vaccines comes to fruition and lenders continue to underwrite loans sensibly, while taking a proactive and collaborative approach to customers in default, then there is no reason why this quarter’s figures should not prove a strong foundation for a robust and sustainable recovery.”