Builders welcome lending figures with note of caution

Nicola Barclay
Nicola Barclay

Homes for Scotland has welcomed new figures from the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) showing more loans advanced to first-time buyers in Scotland during the third quarter of 2016 than any other since 2007.

Carol Anderson, CML Scotland chair, said the figures show Scotland’s housing market “is in good shape and open for business moving forward”.

Homes for Scotland has welcomed the fact that 8,600 mortgages were taken out by first-time buyers during July-September 2016, but issued a note of caution in relation to the reported fall in activity for other home movers.

Chief Executive Nicola Barclay said: “Today’s figures for First Time Buyers are good news as this group is the lifeblood of the housing market. They also point to the positive impact the Scottish Government’s Help to Buy shared equity scheme is continuing to have on new build sales, with the ceiling price now targeted at this end of the market.

“However, with the volume of loans to other home buyers 12 per cent down on a year ago, we must not forget the importance of ensuring activity at all levels of the market so that people can move up and down the housing ladder according to their own needs and aspirations.

“We therefore continue to press government for support, including our request for an early review of the bandings of the Land & Buildings Transaction Tax at the middle to upper levels to ensure there are no barriers to aspirational movers who may otherwise choose to stay where they are.”

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