Mortgage approvals have been on the increase during August, with the number of mortgages approved, but not lent, rising to a level unseen since December 2009.
According to the Bank of England, nearly 3000 more mortgages were approved than in July, a total of 52,410. Recently, banks and other lenders have slightly relaxed their criteria for lending, which many hope will translate into higher sales in the months to come.
However, in a deteriorating economy that has eroded buyer confidence in recent times, such changes are to be regarded with caution. The stagnation in average residential prices across the UK over the last year has seen the Halifax and the Nationwide reporting little change.
Historically, the level of mortgage approvals has been a reliable indication of near-term sales trends, so these figures have encouraged many that mortgage borrowing may rise this autumn. In spite of this, some big lenders have told the Bank of England that their ability to lend may be restricted once more, owing to difficulties in raising the necessary funds.
Mortgage Approvals Hit 20-Month High - BBC News