First-time buyers are continuing to help drive the property market, with recent data showing that mortgage lending to first-time buyers totalled £3.7 billion during December 2013. This is a 3% increase over November 2013 and an increase of 48% over the comparable figure for December 2012.
The data, which has recently been released by the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML), also revealed that the total number of loans to first-time buyers amounted to 26,700 in December, up 1% on November 2013 and an increase of 37% compared to December 2012.
The typical first-time buyer income multiple has also increased, with first-time buyers typically borrowing 3.43 times their gross income in December 2013, compared to 3.38 in November 2013.
On top of this, the continued downward trend in mortgage interest rates has kept borrowers' payment burden low. First-time buyers in December spent 19% of gross income to cover capital and interest payments, slightly higher than the 19.1% in November 2013 but down from 20% in December 2012. In addition, over 95% of first-time buyers opted for fixed rate mortgages in December.
The CML has also created profiles of UK lending in the fourth quarter of 2013 and for the year as a whole. The CML data shows:
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