The Bank England has reported that mortgage approvals for house purchase rose to 70,900 in January 2020, 4.4% higher than in December, and the highest since February 2016.
Approvals for remortgage also rose on the month, by 3.9%, to 52,100.
Net mortgage borrowing – which lags approvals – by households was £4.0 billion in January, slightly below the £4.3 billion average seen over the past six months.
The annual growth rate for mortgage borrowing remained at 3.4%.
Vikki Jefferies, proposition director at PRIMIS, said: “It’s promising to see that the level of consumer credit remained steady in January. That said, it’s important that consumers keep on top of their finances to ensure they don’t overextend themselves with their outgoings. This is particularly important for those who borrowed during January to make ends meet, perhaps as they managed the fallout of the Christmas period.
“This is where advisers can step in to help. With the support of a professional, borrowers will be better-informed on how to manage their finances in the long-run and are less likely to fall into a mortgage deal that could leave them financially worse off. Advisers are also a big help for clients whose circumstances change during their term, having the resources to be able to offer customers a better deal that aligns with their new financial situation.”