Mortgage lending falls again

New figures have shown that it is becoming more and more difficult to obtain finance when looking to buy a home.

Despite recent figures from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors showing that interest from first-time buyers had consistently increased over the past three months, new research from the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) has shown that gross mortgage lending fell again in January.

While Decembers figures totalled £13.5 billion, January saw an eight per cent fall to £12.4 billion.

The drop means the total is the lowest monthly figure since April 2001 and represents a 52 per cent reduction in lending since January 2008.

CML head of research Bob Pannell explained that there is still a long way to go.

"Mortgage lending activity continues to be very weak and while people are searching eagerly for some signs of recovery, it would be unrealistic to expect a meaningful revival in lending in coming months," he said.

"Even when conditions do improve, gross lending will be one of the later measures to recover."

The news may lead to some homeowners opting to improve their properties by adding a conservatory or glazed extension to help make the most of the impending spring and summer weather.