Peer-to-peer property lender Blend Network expects to see a strong deal flow in the year ahead, thanks to a combination of good loans, UK house price growth, and “hungry investors”.
In its February Property Market Monitor, the platform confirmed that it had funded £1.25m in loans since the start of the year, with two loans reaching their funding targets in less than a minute.
“We continue to see a healthy deal flow coming from across the UK and have some exciting loans in Stoke-on-Trent and Bournemouth that are currently undergoing due diligence by our team,” the company said.
“We continue to like houses of multiple occupancy (HMOs) deals and are keen to fund more in the right locations. We also see good appetite from our lenders who are keen to deploy cash on good deals. Our recent loans were snatched up by hungry investors in minutes – two of our three recent loans were funded in less than one minute.”
Blend’s property market report also highlighted that UK house price growth has continued its upwards trend in recent months, with the average house price rising by 1.9 per cent in January, year on year – up from 1.4 per cent in December.
The platform also noted that the latest English Housing Survey showed a slight uptick in the home ownership rate from 63.5 per cent in 2018, to 63.8 per cent in 2019, even though the house price to earnings ratio remains very high, especially for first time buyers.
Meanwhile, housebuilding activity in the UK remains below government targets, with just 39,510 new homes being constructed between July and September 2019, down by 11 per cent from the same period the previous year.
“The underlying pace of the housing market activity has remained broadly stable over the past few months, with the number of mortgages approved for house purchase continuing within the fairly narrow range prevailing over the past two years,” said Blend.
“Healthy labour market conditions and low borrowing costs appear to be offsetting the drag from the uncertain economic outlook.”