Mortgage market picks up in May

Mortgage market picks up in May

The UK mortgage market picked up slightly in May, with loan approvals rising to 39,244 – up from 38,327 the previous month.

UK Finance, which published the data earlier this week, noted that approvals had ‘bounced back’ to a four-month high, following a period of somewhat ‘lacklustre’ lending earlier in the year.

Back in March, a record low of just 37,769 mortgages were approved, as potential buyers held steady amid fears of an impending interest rate increase, and abnormally cold weather had an adverse effect on the market.

Looking forward, commentators and economists are largely unsure as to how the market will perform.

There is equal uncertainty surrounding the Bank of England (BoE) and whether or not it will move to increase interest rates in the near future, having decided to hold its base rate at 0.5 per cent at the past two Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meetings.

Experts such as economist Howard Archer have welcomed the fact that housing market activity has “eased off its 2018-lows.”

However, Mr Archer and others have voiced concerns that the market is “still finding it hard to gain traction.”

The general consensus among experts is that “any meaningful housing market upturn will remain elusive over the coming months,” Mr Archer said.