The CML (Council of Mortgage Lenders) have revealed that mortgage lending levels are still running extremely low after revealing figures for February yesterday.
The figures, which are seen by many in the industry as an accurate representation of market levels, showed that just 32,300 mortgages were arranged in February, 8% up on January but still 12% lower than the same month last year.
With several housing surveys suggesting house prices have remained stagnant over the last six months, the CML revealed that it was cash house sales that were propping up the market.
Cash sales, or a house sale without the need for a mortgage, were now accounting for up to 40% of all sales.
The Council of Mortgage Lending’s chief economist revealed, “The February fall in lending compared to last year was despite the fact that lending in the early months of 2010 was itself depressed following the end of the earlier stamp-duty concession.”
“But research suggests cash purchases have remained steady since the credit crunch, indicating that the housing market may be holding up better than the low mortgage lending levels suggest.”