CML reports mortgage lending fell 5% in November

Financial News

Mortgage lending fell 5% in November according to new reports from the CML.

Gross mortgage stands at £11.1 billion as mortgage lending fell by 5% in November, however number of houses empty for more than 6 months falls to 296,000.

The Council of Mortgage Lenders has announced that mortgage lending fell 5% in November compared to October and is down 10% compared to a year ago.

Official figures out this week show gross mortgage lending stood at around £11.1 billion – the lowest figure seen since April and the lowest figure for the month of November for a decade. With imminent public spending cuts and VAT rises, lenders predict mortgage lending could remain stagnant throughout 2011.

The figures come in direct contrast to research out from the Halifax which shows that the number of houses in England which are empty for more than 6 months has dropped to 296,000. The bank say the number dropped by 6% or 21,000 in the year to April 2010. This marks the first fall in 3 years and suggests that the housing market could be on the road to recovery.

“It is encouraging that the number of long-term empty private homes has fallen, reversing the increases recorded over the preceding two years,” commented Suren Thiru from the Halifax.

Despite the positive figures, there are still concerns regarding the number of empty houses in some areas of the UK. The figures show 61% of the remaining empty houses were located in the north, while the north-west alone had 22% of all English long-term voids.

The biggest fall in the number of empty houses was seen in Yorkshire and Humberside where the figure fell by 22% from the last financial year, however the biggest increase of 10% was seen in the south west. The bank reaffirmed that empty houses were classed as those waiting for a tenant, those being modernised or those which remain empty because they are in a poor state or about to be demolished.