From 1st July the Council of Mortgage Lenders is integrated into a new trade association, UK Finance. For the time being, all UKF mortgage information will continue to be published on this website, and UKF member-only mortgage information will only be available here.

UK Finance represents around 300 firms in the UK providing credit, banking, markets and payment-related services. The new organisation takes on most of the activities previously carried out by the Asset Based Finance Association, the British Bankers’ Association, the Council of Mortgage Lenders, Financial Fraud Action UK, Payments UK and the UK Cards Association. Please go to www.ukfinance.org.uk for wider content and updates from UK Finance.

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Home buying activity in Northern Ireland up 3% year-on-year in first quarter

Published: 24 May 2017

In the first quarter:

  • Home buyers borrowed £350m, down 13% compared to the fourth quarter 2016 but up 3% compared to the first quarter 2016. There were 3,200 taken out for house purchase, down 14% quarter-on-quarter but unchanged compared to a year ago.
  • First-time buyers borrowed £190m, down 14% on the fourth quarter but up 19% on the first quarter last year. This totalled 2,000 loans, down 9% quarter-on-quarter but up 18% year-on-year. 
  • Home movers borrowed £150m, down 21% quarter-on-quarter and 17% compared to a year ago. This totalled 1,200 loans, down 20% quarter-on-quarter and 14% compared to the same quarter in 2015.
  • Remortgage activity totalled £200m, unchanged on the fourth quarter but up 18% on the same quarter last year. This came to 2,000 loans, up 5% quarter-on-quarter and 25% compared to a year ago.

Derek Wilson, CML Northern Ireland chair, commented:

First-time buyers continue to be a key driver in Northern Ireland accounting for 63% of lending for house purchase this quarter, the highest proportion since 2001, due in part to affordability being better in Northern Ireland than the UK overall. Seasonal factors and a surge in activity ahead of stamp duty reform a year ago make the home mover picture look more subdued but we expect activity to pick up in the summer months.

After a substantial decline post-recession in Northern Ireland, remortgaging has had a resurgence showing year-on-year growth every quarter for two years running buoyed by attractive mortgage deals in the market.

Affordability in Northern Ireland remains positive

First-time buyers affordability metrics in Northern Ireland remained better in the first quarter than for the UK overall. First-time buyers typically borrowed £95,000 (£133,000 in the UK overall), unchanged from the previous quarter. The average household income was £31,900 (£40,000 in the UK overall), up from £31,800. The typical income multiple in Northern Ireland of 2.92 (compared to 2.88 the previous quarter) also compared favourably to the UK average of 3.53.

Affordability metrics for home movers saw the typical amount borrowed this quarter was £115,000 (£175,000 in the UK overall), up from £112,800 the previous quarter. The average household income of a home mover was £46,000 (£54,600 in the UK overall), down from £46,100. This meant the typical home mover income multiple in Northern Ireland was 2.59, compared to 2.48 the previous quarter and the UK average of 3.34.

Chart 1: Number of loans to home-owners, 2007-2017

20170522 Q1 2017 N Ireland MLT chart 1

Source: CML Regulated Mortgage Survey

Download data

Table 1: Number of loans for house purchase and remortgage in the first quarter 

 

House purchase

Remortgage

 

FTBs

Movers

Home owners

Q1 2016

1,700

1,400

1,600

Q4 2016

2,200

1,500

1,900

Q1 2017

2,000

1,200 2,000

Change compared to Q4 2016

-9.1%

-20.0% +5.3%

Change compared to Q1 2016

+17.6%

-14.3% +25.0%

Table 2: Value of loans for house purchase and remortgage in the first quarter

 

House purchase (£m)

Remortgage (£m)

  FTBs Movers Home owners

Q1 2016

160 180 170

Q4 2016

220 190 200

Q1 2017

190 150 200

Change compared to Q4 2016

-13.6% -21.1% 0.0%

Change compared to Q1 2016

+18.8% -16.7% +17.6%

20170522 Q1 2017 N Ireland MLT infographic

20170522 Q1 2017 Home movers N Ireland MLT infographic

 

Notes to editors

1. The Council of Mortgage Lenders' members are banks, building societies and other lenders who together undertake around 97% of all residential mortgage lending in the UK. There are 11.1 million mortgages in the UK, with loans worth over £1.3 trillion.

2. Source: CML Regulated Mortgage Survey

3. The Council of Mortgage Lenders does not publish statistics for mortgage approvals. The data in our monthly Regulated Mortgage Survey and gross lending press releases relate to mortgage advances only. A mortgage approval is the firm offer to a customer of a specific amount of credit secured against a particular property. A mortgage advance is the total amount of loan actually provided to the buyer, by the lender. Please see the mortgage statistics timeline on our website for further information.

4. Data for the second quarter of 2017 will be released on Wednesday 23 August 2017.

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Gareth Hill

020 7438 8922