Mortgage approvals dropped in February

By Michelle Rock

There was a decline in the number of new mortgage approvals in February in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK according to new figures from the Bank of England.

Economists suggest that the decline is not indicative of a stalling property market, but rather an unusually high number of new mortgage approvals in January that was unlikely to be sustained into February. There were 70,309 mortgage approvals in February, more than 6,000 down on the 76,753 new loans in January. It is the first decline in month-on-month mortgage approvals since January of last year, and while it was reasonably expected, it was not imagined that the decline would be so pronounced. The total is still an increase over February 2013.

Other statistics suggest that the large majority (95 per cent) of new mortgage borrowers are choosing a fixed rate product even though there are higher costs associated. Mortgage borrowers are seemingly sceptical of assurances that interest rates aren't going to be increasing anytime soon, and opting for the security of a fixed rate mortgage.

If you are buying a house in Northern Ireland, or selling or remortgaging a property, contact one of the conveyancing solicitors at Wilson Nesbitt in Belfast for information and advice on the legal process by calling 0800 840 9290.