Mortgage approvals hit a two-year high
Friday 24 February 2012
High street banks turned on the lending taps in January with the most mortgage approvals for more than two years, the British Bankers' Association (BBA) said yesterday.
The rise to 38,092 – the biggest since December 2009 – came as first-time buyers rushed to beat the stamp duty holiday, which ends next month. Buyers getting on the first rung of the property ladder will pay no stamp duty on purchases up to £250,000 until 24 March.
The figures echo upbeat comments from housebuilders on a sales revival since the new year, although experts warned that the rush to beat the deadline was only likely to give a temporary boost to the market.
IHS Global Insight's Howard Archer said: "Despite the recent limited pick-up, housing market activity is still low compared to long-term norms. And despite current signs of improvement, the economic fundamentals still look far from rosy for the housing market with unemployment high and likely to rise further."
Shoppers are also unwilling to add to their debts as the BBA underlined the fragile consumer confidence.
- 1 Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
- 2 Mother of newborn Baby No 59 trapped in sewer pipe told Chinese police she 'heard crying' when she raised alarm
- 4 Tennis fan suing Australian Open organisers for 'failing to shade spectators' during Murray match
- 5 This crazy skiing video will leave you feeling queasy
Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
AirAsia QZ8501: Black box reveals warning alarms 'screamed' before crash, as more bodies recovered from near fuselage of jet
Rob Lowe hits out at White House decision not to meet Israeli leader
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign
British Muslim leaders outraged after Eric Pickles says followers of Islam should 'prove their identity'
UK terror fears: My jihadist son returned from Syria mentally scarred – now he is being ignored
Nigel Farage: NHS might have to be replaced by private health insurance
Billy Crystal: 'Stop shoving gay sex scenes in my face'
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
iJobs Money & Business
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Tax Assistant is required to join a leading ...
£16000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£45000 - £47000 per annum + bonus + benefits: Ashdown Group: Java Developer / ...
£35000 - £38000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager - Marke...