UK Finance has revealed that gross mortgage lending in March is estimated to have been £20.5bn, 2.3% lower than a year earlier.
Meanwhile, the number of total mortgage approvals has also fallen and is 15% lower, with house purchase approvals falling by almost 21%, compared to a year earlier.
Growth in personal deposits has grown by 1.8% over the year, slightly down on the previous six-month average of 2%.
Eric Leenders, managing director, personal finance, UK Finance, said: “March figures show that consumer borrowing was fairly modest, with card spending down and repayments outstripping lending in the first quarter of 2018. Growth in personal deposits also increased over the year, alongside a rise in overdraft repayments.
“There was a rising trend in mortgage approvals for the first three months of 2018 although the number is slightly lower than the same period in 2017.”
Jeff Knight, director of marketing at Foundation Home Loans, added: “Aside from the obvious impact of the rise in interest rates over the next two years, from which we can certainly expect a period of turbulence as lenders and borrowers alike adjust to the new norm, the interesting long-term change will be the specialist market becoming more mainstream. As people’s working patterns change, and older purchasers become a bigger part of the buyers’ demographic, those specialist cases will be far more regular.
“On that front, it’s down to the industry to ensure it is consistently reviewing its offering to maintain interest, and guide those borrowers to the best possible deal to ensure they don’t miss out on securing finance simply due to lifestyle changes.”