More mortgages were made available by lenders in the UK in the final quarter of 2009, the Bank of England has said.
The availability of mortgages is on the rise, providing a glimmer of hope for first-time buyers, figures suggest. An improved economic outlook and house price rises had driven the rise in lending, the Bank said in a report.
People looking to borrow more than 75% of their property's value saw the biggest improvement in choice. With interest rates set to rise, you'll save thousands if you get one of these top fixed rate mortgages now.
The report also said that lenders expected to make credit more easily available to households and businesses in the first quarter of 2010. "Credit availability was expected to improve further in the first quarter of 2010 for corporates and for secured lending to households and to stabilise for household unsecured credit," the central bank's credit conditions survey said.
The quarterly survey asks lenders about credit conditions over the past three months. "The survey raises hopes that credit conditions will increasingly become less of a constraint on economic activity over the coming months," Howard Archer, chief UK economist at Global Insight.
It is considered that this is critical to sustainable recovery prospects.