January 2017 saw the highest levels of mortgage lending since January 2008. Gross lending reached £18.9billion which is a 2% increase on this time last year. In the UK currently there are around 11 million live mortgages worth a total of around £1.3trillion. This all begs the question – are we about to enter a new credit boom and will this impact the development finance market?
There are contributing factors to January’s high levels of increased lending that may be short term. This includes mass remortgaging to better rates now the Bank of England has cut the base rate to 0.25% and an influx of first time buyers to the housing market.
Regardless of the make-up of the mortgages, the high rate of increased lending in January does suggest that lenders are now at their most willing, since the financial crisis, to lend.
The buck does not stop at residential properties, however. Regardless of recent figures suggesting that up to a third of sites owned by developers have not been built on in London – development remains a crucial and healthy sector both in London and the UK with many projects starting.
This is an especially good time to invest in build to rent developments. House prices are to remain stagnant over the next year but the rental sector is set to remain at a steady rate of growth, with London set to become a ‘city of renters’ by 2025 and developments are getting more imaginative. Indeed, as demand for property outstrips supply, particularly in the capital, the speed at which developments are being planned and completed is sometimes accelerating, meaning a faster return on investments.
Across the capital, we are seeing a new breed of creative development. The Collective development in Acton, for example, is pioneering a ‘co-living’ scheme in which people can opt to share bathrooms and kitchens but have their own rooms and live within a community equipped with a cinema, roof terrace and gym.
Other developments, such as new build apartments for buyers and the rental market also present a lively market; from planning to completion, the newly developed Southbank Place – a stone’s throw away from the London eye, one of London’s busiest tourist areas is predicted to take just three years, with flats going on the market from May 2018, with work having only been started in 2015.
Every development is unique and with more lenders willing to fund projects there has rarely been a better time take advantage of increased lending levels and follow your development dreams. Enness brokers are in a unique position within the industry to help facilitate these goals too.
Over a long period of time, Enness has built, maintained and nurtured relationships with a large variety of lenders within the development sector.
If you have any queries, please do not hesitate to get in touch.