UK house prices: Rise in mortgage loans could mean slowdown is ending

Tim Wallace
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Bank of England boss Mark Carney took steps last year to limit risky mortgage lending
Mortgage approvals edged up in January, Bank of England figures showed yesterday, hinting that the slowdown in the market could be coming to an end.

A total of 60,786 loans were approved in January, up from 60,349 in December.

However, that is still down from 75,559 in January 2014.

“A second successive – albeit small – rise in mortgage approvals in January reported by the Bank of England supports our suspicion that the weakening in housing market activity has bottomed out,” said Howard Archer, chief economist at IHS Global Insight.

“We expect support for housing market activity to come over the coming months from the recent stamp duty reform, very low mortgage rates, elevated consumer confidence, a pick-up in earnings growth and rising employment.”

Archer expects house prices to rise by five per cent over 2015, down from double-digit percentage increases last year.

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