Number Of Active Buyers Continues Falling

Search volume has now decreased by over a third within a two week period of time.

The overall volume of searches on Wednesday March 25 was 24.02 per cent down on the same time last week and 33.36 per cent lower than the number of searches two weeks ago.

The volume of documents prepared on Wednesday was 17.6 per cent and 23 per cent lower than the number prepared one week and two weeks ago respectively. The total value of documented loans had also reduced by 15.86 per cent and 23.41 per cent on a one week and two week comparison respectively.

James Tucker, CEO of mortgage technology provider Twenty7Tec, commented:

“These figures are the first set of full week figures since the announcement of the three-month mortgage holiday schemes by the Chancellor.

“Search volumes – the number of people looking for mortgages – are markedly down. Yesterday was almost one-quarter lower than the same day last week and one-third lower than two weeks ago.

“Likewise, we have seen a drop of 16.18% in the search volumes in the seven days to yesterday, and searches are 20.35% lower than the same seven-day period from two weeks ago.

“In ‘normal’ weeks, Monday to Wednesday activity accounts for around 55-60% of all weekly searches, and they are the three strongest performing days of the week. In the past 7 days, Monday to Wednesday accounts for 51.8%, and the past two days (Tuesday and Wednesday) are the lowest performing weekdays for mortgage searches in the past four weeks. Based on this run rate, we are predicting that this week will end up lower by close of business on Sunday by around 21.5% compared to last week.

“The volumes of remortgages have remained steady over recent days, which shows that brokers are working hard to stay in touch with their clients and identify where they can save them money. However, purchase mortgages were down a further 11% day on day. Normally, purchases and remortgages volumes are at around parity. Currently they are split 40/60 purchase/remortgage, so purchase mortgage search volumes are currently 50% lower than remortgage search volumes.

“In terms of applicant types, of particular note is that first time buyer searches are down 34% over the past two working days. And finally, the total value of loans documented is down 15.86% yesterday versus the same day last week.

“Given the Government clarification on moving house late last night, that ‘home buyers should, as far as possible, delay moving home until the Coronavirus crisis has abated,’ we are not yet at the bottom of this curve.”

“Major market moves yesterday included Vida Homeloans withdrawing all their products for the time being to focus their efforts on dealing with their current pipeline and West Bromwich Building Society withdrawing all products except for standard retention.”

“We are hopeful that the moves by the Chancellor to firm up the market and retain resilience in the economy, alongside better performing stock markets is a signal that we are nearing the bottom of our challenges. We’re also looking forward to hearing how the Chancellor deals with the self-employed in today’s announcements which should signal more confidence to lenders and brokers alike.”

1 Comment

  • test

    A third of those who would normally enter the market seem to have decided not to. A substantial proportion of those already in it can be expected to want to get out.

    A complete chain will become a rarity

    The UK economy already wastes £271m pa on aborted transactions in a normal year

    Will conveyancers show empathy with their clients by foregoing/delaying collection of fees for abortive work?

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