Buy to let mortgages up by 84,000

Buy to let mortgages increased by 84,000 in 2011, according to recent data released by the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML).
The last quarter of 2011 saw almost 35,000 buy to let mortgages advanced totalling £4 billion, over 15,000 of which were remortgage advances.  
The figures are almost identical to volumes for the third quarter of 2011, 34,300 advances with a total value of £4 billion, but considerably higher than the last quarter of 2010, 26,300 advances valued at £2.9 billion.
Buy to let figures are still operating at muted levels when compared to the third quarter of 2007, where 93,000 advances were made at a value of £12.7 billion, but clearly buy to let mortgages are continuing to recover from the lows experienced in 2009.
Buy to let mortgages represented around 11 per cent of the total gross mortgage lending during the last quarter of 2011.
Paul Smee, CML Director General, commented:
"Buy-to-let lending continues to perform well. Demand for rented property remains high, so the rationale for buy-to-let remains strong, and there is little reason to foresee any change to this positive outlook for the sector.
These figures do not suggest that buy-to-let is crowding out first-time buyers; more that it is performing a really important role within the overall housing market. The benefits of the availability of good quality, private rented housing should not be overlooked, especially as there are many households which need the flexibility and mobility that the private rented sector is well placed to provide."
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