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House purchase lending up in Northern Ireland and Wales

CML

The number of loans taken out for house purchase in Northern Ireland increased by 21 per cent in the third quarter.

The Council of Mortgage Lenders’ chair in Northern Ireland says today’s figures demonstrate a “resilience” emerging from the market although the 2,300 loans advanced represents a 4 per cent decline from the total in third quarter of 2011.

A total of £210m was advanced for house purchase loans, up from £170m in the second quarter.

A total of 1,300 first-time buyers purchased a house in the three months ending September, representing a quarterly increase of 18 per cent. By value, FTBs borrowed £100m, up from £80m in the second quarter but below the £110m recorded for the third quarter of 2011.

Quarterly remortgage lending fell by 17 per cent, from £120m to £100m.

CML Northern Ireland chair: “While house prices have fallen further in Northern Ireland than the rest of the UK, this has benefitted those entering the market, with lower entry costs enabling more first-time buyers to take their first step onto the property ladder.

“Even though house purchase lending was slow compared to the same period last year, this year’s quarter-on-quarter results show that there are some signs of resilience emerging from the market.”

Nortern Ireland’s rate of growth is markedly better than the 16 per cent rise shown in the UK overall, driven by a boost in the number of first-time buyers and home movers. The rest of the UK continues to show much weaker growth rates. Wales, in particular, grew slower than compared with the rest of the UK.

The number of loans advanced for house purchases in Wales grew by 5 per cent over the third quarter to reach 5,900.

The value of house purchase loans reached £650m, up 8 per cent on the previous quarter but down 3 per cent compared with the third quarter of 2011.

Lending to first-time buyers totaled £220m, up from £200m in the second quarter.

Remortgaging also fell in Wales to reach £300m. There was a 14 per cent quarterly decline in the amount advanced to remortgagers and a 32 per cent drop compared with the third quarter of 2011.

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