The Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) has reported that in April, home buyers borrowed £9.6bn, down 14% on March but up 19% on April 2016.
This came to 51,200 loans, down 16% on March but up 9% on April 2016.
First-time buyers borrowed £4.1bn, down 16% on March but up 8% on April 2016. They took out 25,400 loans, down 18% month-on-month but up 2% year-on-year.
Meanwhile, home movers borrowed £5.5bn, down 11% on March but up 28% year-on-year. This equated to 25,700 loans, down 15% month-on-month but up 17% compared to April 2016.
Home-owner remortgage activity was down 16% by value and 18% by volume on March. Compared to a year ago, remortgage lending was down 15% by value and 16% by volume.
Gross buy-to-let saw month-on-month decreases, down 17% by value and 16% by volume. Compared to April 2016, the number of loans increased 1% and the amount borrowed remained unchanged.< Paul Smee, director general of the CML, added: "April comparisons are distorted by the weakness last year following the stamp duty changes, and the normal seasonal lending surge in March. But the seasonally-adjusted picture shows lending relatively unchanged month-on-month across all lending segments. "Heading into the summer months, we expect the market to remain slightly lopsided. Buy-to-let and home movers may well remain subdued, as they have been for the last six months. But both first-time buyer and remortgage lending should maintain momentum on the coattails of the attractive deals available." "With lending to first time buyers increasing annually, the market remains open to young borrowers looking to take advantage of the current record low mortgage rates," said Richard Sexton, director of e.surv. "In fact, our latest Mortgage Monitor report showed that small deposit borrowers now make up more than one-fifth of the total mortgage market. "However, for the large numbers of want-to-be buyers unable to save for a deposit, home ownership remains out of reach. Our country’s lack of housing supply is in part to blame for this, as we are simply not building enough affordable homes to cater for current demand. To help boost market fluidity, and nurse the sector back to health, we need a significant investment in building new homes to help ensure that those who wish to buy are able to."