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Mortgage lending drops 10%

Gross lending down 10% month-on-month

Mortgage lending in the UK fell by 10% during November, according to a new report. £12bn worth of home loans were advanced to consumers last month, compared with the £13.3bn made available to borrowers during October.

Lending was down 14% year-on-year, dropping from £13.9bn in November 2008, the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) reports.

While a modest seasonal fall in lending is typical, the CML says a dip of 10% is unusually high.

House buying and mortgages in 2010

In the monthly market commentary published on 18 December, CML economist Paul Samter said: ‘There has been a modest increase in the availability of mortgage credit recently, including some tentative signs of a few higher loan-to-value products emerging.’

However, first time buyers are still likely to find getting on to the housing ladder difficult in 2010. Higher loan-to-value (LTV) mortgages remain harder to obtain than mortgages for borrowers with large deposits or equity stakes, and they also tend to come with higher interest rates.

Mr Samter continued: ‘There is no sign of a swift recovery in lending volumes, especially with remortgaging set to remain at subdued levels while low interest rates persist.’

He suggested that the housing market was unlikely to undergo significant change in early 2010, citing the end of the stamp duty holiday as a factor that may have encouraged activity to ‘bunch’ over the last few months of 2009.

Finding the best mortgage deal

Whether you’re looking to move home or remortgage your current property in 2010, don’t forget that Which? has several mortgage tools and guides which could help you track down the best deal.

Our mortgage finder will search the market for mortgages that meet your individual needs, taking into account fees and charges as well as the interest rates on offer to help you compare deals accurately.

Meanwhile, our regular review of mortgage lenders’ customer service might help you decide which bank or building society you’d prefer to deal with.

If you’re after simple information on the different types of mortgage deals available, check out our easy to read .

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