Broker confidence strengthens at year end: Imla – Mortgage Strategy

Broker confidence strengthens at year end: Imla – Mortgage Strategy

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Confidence levels in the mortgage market rose in December 2022 after wobbling in October, the Intermediary Mortgage Lenders Association says in a new report.

In the final quarter of 2022, the proportion of brokers reporting they were ‘not very confident’ about the industry stood at 29%, this number having been 4% in Q4 2021.

And in October 2022, just over half of intermediaries – 56% – said they were ‘confident’ about the mortgage market. However, by December this had risen to 70%.

When it came to their own businesses, there was an annual jump from 5% to 11% saying they were ‘not very confident’ in their outlook in Q4 2022, but overall brokers remained positive, with 87% saying they were either ‘very’ or ‘fairly’ confident.

During this time, the Imla publication continues, the average number of mortgage cases each intermediary saw in the final quarter of the year came to 94, not far off the 103 number for Q4 2021.

Meanwhile, the average number of decisions in principle handled dipped at the start of the final quarter of 2022, rising to 26 in December, which was the same number racked up in July and August of that year.

Imla executive director Kate Davies comments: “It’s not surprising that the chaotic political and economic situation which played out in the autumn has been reflected in the survey results for the last quarter of the year. But it’s also reassuring that caseloads remained steady and intermediaries’ confidence in their own business was not overly hampered.

“There are green shoots here, with December marking a noticeable increase in confidence compared to October. Looking further back, the end of 2021 saw a record peak for the average intermediary case load and volumes of work are still remaining comparatively strong a year on, which is a positive sign.

“The Bank of England’s continuing action to bring inflation under control, combined with strong competition amongst lenders to attract new business, are good indicators of recovery.

“There are increasing numbers of keenly priced products and options out there for borrowers – and it will be the job of advisers and lenders to continue helping borrowers out of the woods, supporting them in their search for an appropriate, affordable and sensible deal.”

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