Two thirds (67%) of first-time buyer applications reached completion in the first quarter of 2017, Intermediary Mortgage Lenders Association (IMLA) research has revealed.
This represents an increase from just under half (48%) in the first quarter of 2016.
What is more 84% of first-time buyer applications leading to a mortgage offer.
Peter Williams, Executive Director of IMLA, said: “Rising levels of mortgage enquiries, applications and completions shows that a significant number of first-time buyers are still both willing and able to get a foot on the property ladder.
“Low mortgage rates have contributed to this improving outlook for first-time mortgage borrowers. However, with the Bank of England reporting that average rates are creeping up on the higher loan-to-value products that buyers with modest deposits rely on, policymakers must continue to do their upmost to support lending to this part of the market.”
The rate of mortgage applications resulting in completions across the intermediary channel reached 69% in Q1 2017, the highest level recorded since IMLA started reporting the data in the first quarter of 2016.
Williams added: “The improving ratio of enquiries and applications to mortgage completions over the last year is a testament to the success of the intermediary channel in matching consumers with suitable products in a complicated and competitive marketplace.
“The intermediary channel is well placed to deal with the needs of the growing number of borrowers with non-standard circumstances, which is reflected in intermediaries’ high levels of confidence.”