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First-time buyers not deterred by Brexit

Patrick Christys
Apr 4, 2019

What's all this Brexit nonsense about anyway? First-time buyers don't seem to care.

New figures show there were 4.6% more first-time buyers taking out mortgages in January than in the same period last year.

This equates to roughly 25,100 new property owners entering the market.

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Andrew Montlake, director of mortgage broker, Coreco, said: 'Rarely has the gulf between the Westminster bubble and the rest of the country looked so large.

'As MPs tie themselves in knots, the mortgage market has been quietly getting on with business as usual.

'Two things are clear from January's strong mortgage lending data – the dream of owning a home continues to burn brightly for thousands of would-be buyers, and lenders have responded in kind.' 

However, the reality is that this surge in first-time buyers is being fuelled by price stagnation as the nation holds its breath to see what Britain looks like after its exit from the European Union.

According to the latest figures from RICS, house price growth is at its weakest since 2011. 

Couple that with a lot of brokers now offering 95% mortgages and it's clear to see how first-time buyers suddenly find themselves in a position to get on the ladder.

Things could all come to a stuttering halt, though, as  the average time taken to sell nationally is the joint longest average for the past two years.

Again, this is good news for first-time buyers purely because sellers may be less reluctant to accept a low-ball offer for fear they could end up sitting on their property for years if the market slows.

Mark Harris, chief executive of mortgage broker SPF Private Clients, said: ‘The year has got off to a remarkably good start on the lending front despite ongoing political uncertainty.  

'Clearly, people have had enough with situations they can’t control and are getting on with their lives.

‘Lenders are keen to lend and rates are extremely competitive. Several lenders have trimmed rates this year in an effort to encourage more business, while innovative tweaks here and there are increasing as an alternative to offering the cheapest rate in the market.'


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