Newly published mortgage figures suggest that new mortgage lending has broken through the January record by a more decisive factor then previously thought.
Preliminary figures had suggested that mortgage lending was 25 per cent up on the same period of last year, breaking the previous monthly record.
Bank of England figures now suggest that mortgage approvals are actually up 49 per cent on the same period of 2004, however.
The number of approvals in a single month has now hit heights not seen since May 2004, standing at 122,000.
“Mortgage approvals are also clearly above their average for the last decade of 100,000, strengthening the argument that the housing market in 2006 will see the first rise in activity since 2002,” said Sarah McShane of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics).
Mortgage lending has boomed on the back of a competitive market, with people comparing products to find the best mortgage rate.
“This increased housing market activity has led to an overall firming in house prices in recent months,” said Howard Archer of analysts Global Insight.
“There is undeniably a risk that house prices could move significantly higher over the coming months.”
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