The third week of April saw remortgage instructions increase by 12.8% on the week before,
according to data from conveyancing solutions provider LMS.
However, instruction levels remain 15% lower than they were immediately before the
government introduced lockdown measures across the UK. This is set to lead to a 4%
reduction in the number of completions in April compared to March.
Unsurprisingly, there has been an increase in the number of remortgages being cancelled,
with a sharp rise seen in April - up 6.7% against 1.3% in March.
Nick Chadbourne, chief executive of LMS, said: “Increased instruction levels are a positive
sign for the market, with borrower enquiries nearing pre-lockdown numbers. Growth over the last two weeks is even more encouraging, and we hope that this trend continues as we
move through spring.
“Fees-assisted remortgages are increasing as a share of remortgage activity, which
suggests that brokers are identifying the benefits of these products and are passing them
onto their clients. FARs could drive new instructions and overall activity in the coming weeks, as they offer unique advantages for the present situation.
“Reduced ID requirements, less paperwork for customers, and lower need for searches all
combine to overcome current challenges to remortgaging and could reduce the likelihood
that transactions are cancelled.
“More encouragement can be taken from consistent completion, pipeline, and cancellation
figures. Though pipeline figures are down slightly on last year, they’re in line with recent
months, showing that the market has stabilised.”