Date Published 23 April 2013
The Bank of England reports an improving housing market activity, both for new home sales and secondary market transactions.
That had continued to reflect falls in mortgage rates - including at high loan to value ratios - and an improvement in mortgage availability, as well as the effects of specific government-backed incentive schemes for home ownership.
An Agents` survey of companies close to the housing market also found a marked improvement in mortgage conditions over the past year. The easing in credit conditions - in part due to the effects of the Funding for Lending Scheme - was seen by many contacts as causing some `freeing up` of the housing market, with some potential buyers - including first-time buyers - encouraged to return to the market.
However, there were reports that sales were taking longer to complete than had historically been the case, reflecting tighter scrutiny of mortgage applications than in the past and buyer uncertainty in some cases