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CML: March another record lending month

21 April 2006
The Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) reports that March 2006 is the highest mortgage-lending month on record across the board, from debt mortgages and bad credit mortgages to homeowner loans.

Gross mortgage lending during the month reached £28.3 billion, which represents an increase of 26 per cent on the previous month and a 34 per cent increase from this time last year.

The increase in mortgage lending in the spring is usually much higher than at other times of the year due to the lull in house purchases during the winter months, but even in spite of seasonal adjustments the escalation in mortgage activity is substantial.

"The record lending in March reflects the high level of loan approvals in the autumn and winter as house prices stabilised and consumer confidence returned to the market," said CML director general Michael Coogan.

"House-buying activity was particularly strong around London reflecting high city bonuses, and this is probably a factor behind the strength of lending."

The cost of moving house in the London metropolitan area is typically 50 per cent higher than in the rest of the country, but it seems this has not deterred movers and first-time buyers alike.

"Mortgage approvals remain high," Mr Coogan continued, "but the upward trend in seasonally adjusted approvals for house purchases witnessed over the past year seems to be drawing to an end."

He did add that a "robust level of lending" was expected throughout the spring and summer months and observers agree that the boom may not necessarily be over yet. providing you with breaking mortgage news.

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