According to a Bank of England survey of banks and building societies, the number of mortgages available for borrowers will rise during the first quarter of 2017.
The Bank of England’s Credit Conditions Survey also found that the number of mortgages available for less than a 25% deposit will rise.
Mortgage interest rates remain low at the beginning of 2017. Because of swap rate increases that affect how lenders raise their money, mortgage interest rates could rise in 2017. The Halifax Building society, in its review of 2016, reported that the number of first time buyers was at a ten year high. In 2016 there were 335,750 first time buyers, a rise of 7.3% compared to 2015. The Halifax also noted that the number of mortgages lasting between 30 and 35 years has risen which means that many people will still be paying off their mortgage after they retire.
The government has introduced a number of schemes to help first time buyers, including the New Starter Homes scheme. Low mortgage interest rates have also contributed to the increase in home ownership. The average house price is high at £205,17, but this has not put off buyers.
The increase in mortgages has also increased the sales of mortgage protection insurance, which covers mortgage payments if a borrower is ill or has an accident that prevents them working. One insurance broker has reported a 27% increase in mortgage protection insurance sales in the North West of England.