For my last column of the year, I’m not going to do the obligatory round up of the year! Nor will I gasp my astonishment at how quickly the year has gone by. What I will say is that I think that 2013 has been a year of foundations for what we all hope will be a fantastic year in 2014.Total lending for 2013 was predicted to be in the region of £150-160bn. The actual figure will be nearer £170bn. Predictions for 2014 are already being suggesting volumes will reach £190-£200bn (2007 was £370bn!).
Although the funding for lending scheme is being withdrawn in January, a year earlier than planned, the financial sector is in a strong position and one that we hope will be able to stand on its own two feet to move forward successfully over the coming months.
We have a new housing minister, who so far seems to be singing from the right hymn sheet and might be a friend to the industry, rather than predecessors who thought they knew best. Working together is key for all sectors.It is also reported that there are a number of lenders looking to enter the UK market who are in the process of getting their FCA authorisation. More competition is great news for the economy and can only be good news to the end consumer.
The only negative hanging over all of our heads is that the Bank of England base rate has to rise at some point. The million dollar question is when? If you are looking to review your mortgage at any time soon….don’t leave it too late.Finally, a heartfelt thank you for reading my column over the last twelve months. It has been an enjoyable(!) experience each week trying to provide an insight in to what happens behind the scenes in the mortgage market. But I do love it! No two days are the same and how can anyone not enjoy helping people reach their dream!?
Thank you to all those who have used AToM to source and arrange their mortgage requirements. We’ve had a fantastic year and enjoyed growth in both volume, with November amounting to just shy of £20m in lending, and staff numbers, with our headcount now over 20! And what a great team they are.On behalf of all the staff and directors at AToM, we wish you and your families a very Happy Christmas and Prosperous (& Relaxing) New Year! We look forward to working with you in 2014.