UK housing market more restrained, says CML

Houses Image copyright PA
Image caption Mortgage lending declined among first-time buyers and existing owners

Restrained sentiment among buyers and sellers is causing some fluctuations in the UK housing market with activity dropping recently, lenders say.

Activity "eased back" in November - a time when there tends to be a lull in the housing market, the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) said.

New figures show the number of home loans advanced to first-time buyers was down 11.3% on October.

But the CML said it was also 3.4% down on November 2013.

Overall, gross mortgage lending totalled £16.5bn in November, down 11% on October and 3% lower than the same month a year earlier.

"The easing back of activity is not completely unexpected," said Paul Smee, director general of the CML.

However, he expected a steady acceleration of the housing market in 2015.

"Our forecasts are for gross lending to continue to grow over the next two years, and this reflects our belief that there are more stable conditions in the market than a year ago," he said.

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