The number of home buyers increased in March, encouraged by a rise in first-time buyer activity.

According to statistics put out by The Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML), 31,500 mortgage loans were given out to first-time buyers in March this year, which is more than any other recording in the last 10 years.

The CML reports that in total, 61,700 loans were taken out in March. Meanwhile, almost two thirds of total lending was remortgage lending.

The number of loans taken out for buy-to-let purchases has dropped in the past year, especially when compared with the previous March.

The sharp rise in people taking out loans for buy-to-let purchases in March 2016 is likely to be down to the fact that stamp duty for buy-to-let properties increased by 3% in April 2016.

Paul Smee, Director General of the CML, said: “Overall, lending trends have remained reasonably consistent.”

He continued: “As we head into the summer, we expect a continuation of these trends, with both first-time buyer and remortgage lending expected to maintain momentum in light of the very attractive deals currently available.”

If you are looking to sell, let, rent or buy property in Highbury & Islington, Stoke Newington or Newington Green, contact local Islington estate agents M&M Property on 020 7704 0664.

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