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Mortgage approvals continue to rise

The number of mortgages approved for people buying a home rose significantly during June, indicating that the housing market is stabilising.

A jump of 23 per cent in the number of mortgages taken out meant that the figure has increased for the fifth month in a row. A total of 45,000 mortgages for house purchases were taken out in June, according to the Council of Mortgage Lenders.

Of these mortgages, 17,200 were taken out by first-time buyers getting on to the property ladder, a rise of 26 per cent on May`s figures. However, CML said that the figures were still low compared to standards set in the past.

CML said loans to people buying their first property were well short of the 30,000-plus taken out each month before the credit crunch hit the property market. The number of mortgages for house purchases in June is still only half the average seen in the past seven years.

CML economist Paul Samter said: “Low interest rates and realistic selling prices have helped generate a welcome increase in transactions. But there is some way to go before we reach normal levels of activity.”