IMLA: First time buyer completion rate at three-year high:

Posted on Monday, March 18, 2019

Data collected by IMLA shows that first-time buyer mortgage completion rates are at a three-year high.

The report shows that the rate of mortgage offers for First time buyers handled by intermediaries that were completed reached 89% in Q4 2018, up from 81% in Q3 2018.

Recent growth in the first time buyer market, reiterated by UK Finance finding that first time buyers securing a mortgage in 2018 reached its highest annual level in 12-years, can be attributed to the Help to Buy scheme, according to IMLA.

Government figures outline that the Help to Buy scheme was accountable for around 1,000 home purchases a week in 2018.

Additionally, mortgage intermediaries posted a rise in total completion rates in Q4 2018 at 87%, up from 82% in Q3 2018.

Both re-mortgage and buy-to-let activity also saw a rise, with the former increasing from 83% in Q3 2018 to 87% in Q4 2018 and the latter rising from 82% to 85% in the same time frame.

IMLA predicts that mortgage lending via intermediaries will rise to £169bn in 2019.

Executive director Kate Davies comments: “It is encouraging to see that when an intermediary does apply for a loan on their client’s behalf, they are being accepted and completed at growing rates.

“It is significant that intermediaries are able to demonstrate such a high success rate, especially when helping first time buyers to navigate the complexities of an increasingly competitive and complex mortgage market.

“This is particularly true for those taking out Help to Buy equity loans, who may need even more expert guidance.

“IMLA predicts that mortgage intermediaries will account for a growing share of the mortgage market this year and into 2020.”

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