Mortgage lending hits highest level in a year


Overall lending for house purchases hit its highest level in almost a year in July, according to the latest figures from the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML).

The value of loans increased from £6.9bn to £7.3bn, while the number of mortgages rose by 1,000 to 48,800. Both were at their highest since last August 2010, although they were lower than July last year. Lending to first-time buyers climbed to £2.3bn from £2.2bn in the previous month. It was the highest monthly total since July 2010 (£2.4bn). Average deposits for first-time buyers have held steady at 20% for most of 2011. Buyers typically borrowed 3.18 times their income in July, down from 3.22 in June. Meanwhile, the popularity of fixed-rate mortgages is beginning to fade after hi...

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