Worcester News: Mortgages approvals up following earlier dip
Tue 01 Dec 2015
THE number of mortgage ap-provals made to homebuyers edged upwards in October following a dip the previous month, Bank of England lending figures show. Some 69,630 mortgages with a collective value of 12.2 bil-lion were approved for house purchase in October, mark-ing the highest figure seen since 70,748 approvals were recorded in August. Meanwhile, consumer cred-it continued to grow at its strongest levels since 2006, prompting concerns about people's reliance on personal loans, overdrafts and credit cards in order to make ends meet . The Bank's Money and Credit report for October also showed annual growth of 8.2 per cent in consumer credit, matching the rate of growth seen in September. The annu-al growth rates in consumer credit seen over the past cou-ple of months are the strong-est since February 2006. Joanna Elson, chief ex-ecutive of the Money Advice Trust, the charity that runs National Debtline, said: "To-day's figures confirm we are in the middle of a significant and prolonged rise in bor-rowing by households, with consumer credit now grow-ing at its fastest rate since 2006. "While many will be able to service this extra borrowing, we remain concerned that a minority are turning to cred-it to make ends meet." Commenting on the up-swing in mortgage approv-als for house purchase, Peter Rollings, CEO of estate agent said the package of housing meas-ures unveiled last week by Chancellor George Osborne could boost activity further in the months ahead. The Government's new Help to Buy Isas, which aim to give people trying to get onto the property ladder a helping hand to save for a de-posit, are also set to launch on Tuesday. A stamp duty hike for buy-to-let investors was also an-nounced last week, prompt-ing suggestions that some people may rush to snap up properties in the coming months before this comes into force next year. Mr Rollings said there could be a "winter flurry of buy-to-let borrowing before April's stamp duty shake-up". The Bank also reported that lending to non-financial busi-nesses increased by 2.3 bil-lion in October, marking the highest figure since March.