According to the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML), gross mortgage lending fell in January by 9 per cent.
Lenders advanced £10.4bn, compared to £11.4bn in December.
This surprised me as with rates so low, the mortgage market has been buoyant with activity.
AToM reported our third best month, for four years, in January!
February was slightly quieter with a half term and a shorter month making a difference in figures.
However, overall, the continuing price rate war between the high street lenders is putting a huge amount of confidence back in to the mortgage market.
The higher loan to value (LTV) products are making an apparent comeback, especially for First Time Buyers.
We’re also seeing different ways in which a lender is looking to assist.
The most recent is from the Bath Building Society who has launched a 100 per cent home loan.
However, the brief details include the ‘bank of Mum and Dad’ allowing a charge on their own property to the equivalent of 25 per cent of the borrower’s property value.
This is pretty similar to a deal that Aldermore Mortgages recently launched.
Both signs that lenders have an appetite to lend and are being innovative in providing solutions.
Other lenders have lowered rates recently to those with small deposits.
Accord Mortgages recently reduced rates by 0.4% on their 90 per cent products (10% deposit).
With so many rate changes and reductions, lenders will look closely at recent payment profiles, how many recent credit searches you have incurred by financial institutions and more.
So don’t give any excuses not to lend to you.
The more credit searches you have on your profile, over a recent amount of time, the more likely your credit score will be lower as a result.
Try and ensure there’s no missed or late payments as these will also decrease your credit score.
In short, your credit search / score are the basis on which most lenders will initially decide whether to lend to you or not.
The best rates will almost definitely go to those with the best credit scores.
If you’ve not checked your credit file before, it is well worth a review.
Experian and Equifax tend to be the main two providers used in our market with both offering free trials and you can find links to these on the AToM website.
Dale Jannels - AToM director