Next phase of Help to Buy ‘vital’ to sustaining growth in house purchase lending

Nicola Barclay
Nicola Barclay

A year-on-year growth in house purchase lending in Scotland has been welcomed as a signal of optimism for the sector by the country’s home building industry.

The Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) revealed yesterday that home-owner house purchase lending in Scotland totalled 17,200 loans, down 4 per cent in the third quarter but up 14 per cent on the fourth quarter 2014.

In addition, the £870 million borrowed by first-time buyers in the period was down 2 per cent on the previous quarter but up 14 per cent on the fourth quarter of 2014.

Trade body Homes for Scotland pointed to the importance of the Help to Buy (Scotland) shared equity scheme in sustaining growth in both lending and construction.

Chief executive Nicola Barclay said: “With the majority of Scots still aspiring to own their home, these latest CML statistics showing annual increases in lending by both value and volume will be encouraging news for those looking to take steps onto or up the housing ladder.

“The next phase of the Scottish Government’s hugely successful Help to Buy (Scotland) scheme has a crucial role to play by acting as a further driver for growth, helping to bridge the deposit gap and increase the supply of vital homes and jobs.”

Linda Docherty, CML chair for Scotland, said: “The sustained year-on-year growth in house purchase lending seen since 2012 continued in Scotland this quarter. This meant more first-time buyers and home movers in 2015 took out a loan to purchase a home than in any year since 2008. With an economic climate of low interest rates and competitive mortgage deals, we would expect this growth in the Scottish market to continue into 2016.”

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