Gross mortgage lending in March stood at £17.7bn and was the highest total for third month of the year on record and 11% above the previous highest March total two years ago, the latest figures from the British Banker's Association (BBA) reveal.
The BBA says seasonally adjusted net mortgage lending was also up rising by £5.4bn, compared to £4.7bn in February, £4.3bn in March 2005 and an average of £4.9bn over recent months.
There were 217,072 mortgage approvals in March, with a total value of £21.7bn taking the number of approvals 30% higher than in February, and 15% higher than in March last year.
Meanwhile the approval for house purchase in March rose, to £134,300, 6% higher than a year earlier.
David Dooks, director of statistics at the BBA, says: "On the face of it, mortgage lending was strong in March. While partly reflecting the high number of working days in the month, the approvals numbers show that mortgage activity is running at a higher level than at this time last year, although the market is still somewhat short of the heady times of 2004."
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