Bridge lending hit new high in the last quarter of 2023

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ASTL’s latest data shows a rise in completions in Q4 2023, increasing by 18.4% on the third quarter of the year to hit £1.69 billion

Bridging loan books logged another record high in the last quarter of 2023, according to the Association of Short Term Lenders (ASTL).

Its latest data shows a rise in completions in Q4 2023, increasing by 18.4% on the third quarter of the year to hit £1.69 billion.

Loan books also continued to increase over this three month period, rising by 4.2% to hit a new high of £7.6 billion. This is a rise of over 16% on the same period the previous year.

ASTL’s figures — based on audited data provided by members — show bridging applications dropped marginally. Figures for Q4 were 1.1% lower, when compared to the previous three month period. In total they sat at £9.6 billion for the fourth quarter.

Nonetheless, despite this slight contraction, application figures still remain 25% higher when compared to the equivalent quarter the year before.

Overall the ASTL data shows the average LTVs for these bridging loans rose over this period, up to 58.7%, from 57.7% in the third quarter of the year.

This comes on the back of a period of growth in the bridging market.

ASTL Chief Executive Officer Vic Jannels comments: The short term lending market has ended the year strongly, with a fairly large rise in loans written and only a small drop in the level of applications compared to last quarter.

However, compared to the same period the previous year, application volumes were more than 25% higher in the fourth quarter of 2023, completions rose by over 18% and loan books grew by more than 16%. Member loan books have now surpassed £7 billion for the third successive quarter, setting a new record, he said.

We believe there is great potential for further, sustainable growth in the market and initiatives such as the Certified Practitioner in Specialist Property Finance (CPSP) will play a big role in helping to achieve this, he added.

He adds that the ASTL will continue to raise awareness of bridging finance options amongst brokers and customers.

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