FTB completion rate at three-year high: Imla

Data collected by Imla shows that first-time buyer mortgage completion rates are at a three-year high.

The report shows that the rate of mortgage offers for FTBs handled by intermediaries that were completed reached 89 per cent in Q4 2018, up from 81 per cent in Q3 2018.

Recent growth in the FTB market, reiterated by UK Finance finding that FTBs securing a mortgage in 2018 reached its highest annual level in 12-years, can be attributed to the Help to Buy scheme, according to Imla.

Government figures outline that the HTB scheme was accountable for around 1,000 home purchases a week in 2018.

Additionally, mortgage intermediaries posted a rise in total completion rates in Q4 2018 at 87 per cent, up from 82 per cent in Q3 2018.

Both remortgage and buy-to-let activity also saw a rise, with the former increasing from 83 per cent in Q3 2018 to 87 per cent in Q4 2018 and the latter rising from 82 per cent to 85 per cent in the same time frame.

Imla predicts that mortgage lending via intermediaries will rise to £169bn in 2019.

Executive director Kate Davies comments: “It is encouraging to see that when an intermediary does apply for a loan on their client’s behalf, they are being accepted and completed at growing rates.

“It is significant that intermediaries are able to demonstrate such a high success rate, especially when helping FTBs to navigate the complexities of an increasingly competitive and complex mortgage market.

“This is particularly true for those taking out HTB equity loans, who may need even more expert guidance.

“Imla predicts that mortgage intermediaries will account for a growing share of the mortgage market this year and into 2020.”

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