News Article

Consumer Credit

Scotland and North West hardest hit by April mortgage sales slump

By CreditMan Friday, May 20, 2016

Northern Ireland was the only region to report mortgage sales growth in April (+2.7%), with overall sales falling in all other regional areas, according to Equifax Touchstone analysis of the intermediary marketplace. The North West saw the steepest decline at -7.7%, with Scotland following closely behind at -7.0%.

Buy-to-let mortgage sales dropped by 9.5% (-£276.3m) on March levels and residential mortgage sales were down by 2.8% (-£367.5m). Buy-to-let sales have dropped by a third (-£1.3bn) from February’s high as new stamp duty rates take their toll on the market.

The data from Equifax Touchstone, which covers 92% of the intermediated lending market, shows that the average value of a residential mortgage in April was £191,828 (2015: £181,131), and £159,185 for buy-to-let (2015: £155,195).

Iain Hill, Relationship Manager at Equifax Touchstone, said: “The slump in buy-to-let mortgage sales comes as no surprise given the recent changes in stamp duty, but it will be interesting to see how providers respond.

The FCA this week highlighted the need for further improvements in mortgage competition, and the importance of catering for older consumers. We’ve already seen a number of interesting products come to market in recent months, including 100 per cent mortgages and intergenerational offerings. We expect this drive in innovation to continue with more launches ahead.”

Equifax Touchstone utilises intermediary and customer profiling tools to provide financial services providers with a detailed understanding of their marketplace and client base.