Mortgage lending at 10-year low

Gross mortgage lending in January fell to the lowest level in 10 years as buyers were deterred by the end of the stamp duty holiday, figures showed this week – but experts have warned that lending could decline further as banks lose government funding support. According to the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML), gross mortgages totalled just £9.1bn in January, down 32 per cent from the £13.4bn in December. This is the lowest monthly total since February 2000, when gross lending was £7.9bn. While a seasonal fall is usual between December and January, the CML said the drop was ‘larger than average’ due to higher purchase activity in December, as borrowers rushed to take advantage of the stamp duty holiday on properties valued less than £175,000.