Highest number of first-time buyers for 10 months

June’s first-time buyer numbers were exactly the same as in last August, but 8% lower by volume and value than in June 2010.

Home movers took out 28,600 loans, worth £4.6billion, in June  – up from 23,800, worth £3.7billion in May, but down from 32,800 loans, worth £5.3billion, in June 2010.

Overall, there were 46,700 loans for house purchase, worth £6.7billion, in June, up 22% in volume and value from May, but down 11% by volume and 13% by value on June 2010.

Remortgaging was unchanged in June, totalling 30,700 loans worth £3.8billion. Unlike lending for house purchase, however, remortgaging was up 10% by volume and 9% by value on June 2010.

Lending for house purchase increased in the second quarter. Between April and June, there were 122,000 loans for house purchase, worth £17.6billion, up from 97,200, worth £14.1billion, in the first quarter. But lending for house purchase was lower than in the second quarter last year, when there were 138,300 loans, worth £20billion.

Between April and June, lenders advanced 87,600 remortgaging loans, worth £10.8billion, down from 92,700, worth £11.2billion, in the first quarter, but up from 78,400, worth £9.8 billion, in the second quarter of 2010.

There was little change in lending requirements for either first-time buyers and home movers in June. First-time buyers, on average paid a 20% deposit, unchanged since February. First-time buyer deposits are lower than the high of 25% seen throughout 2009, but higher than the historic norm of 10%. Home movers took out a mortgage worth 70% of their property’s value for the second month. This figure has barely moved over the last few years.

The popularity of fixed-rate mortgages continued to edge up in the second quarter, with 63% of borrowers opting for a fixed rate, compared to 60% in the first quarter and just 46% in the second quarter of 2010. While no immediate rise in interest rate rises is expected, uncertainty over when the first rise will come may have been incentivising borrowers to fix their rates in the second quarter.

The trend away from interest-only mortgages continues for all borrowers, with 87% of house purchase loans in June taken out on a repayment basis, up from 86% in May. This is likely to persist as future home movers and remortgagers continue to take out future mortgages on a repayment basis.

CML director general Paul Smee said: "While there are clearly financial uncertainties ahead, it is encouraging to see more house buyers surfacing at the start of summer. Recent increases in Bank of England approvals figures also show that more completions are expected in July, so the more encouraging numbers may persist for a while."

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