Bridging sector

Bridging lending surpasses pre-EU referendum high

The UK's bridging sector has continued its healthy growth in 2017, with a solid performance in Q3 yielding a new high of £4.7bn, according to West One's Bridging Index.

The quarterly report found that gross annualised lending had increased from £4.3bn in June to surpass 2016’s pre-EU referendum high of £4.4bn and was up 10% on the same period in 2016.

West One felt the findings from the latest edition of the Bridging Index provided further evidence that the bridging sector had recovered from the pronounced decline in Q3 2016 that followed in the wake of the referendum result.

The robustness of the turnaround in Q3 2017 was highlighted by the results of Association of Short Term Lenders’ members, who lent £851m in a quarter that included the traditionally quieter summer holiday period.

This figure was only slightly less than the record £874m in Q2.

“2017 has proven to be a strong year for bridging finance, with a clear return to form after the post-referendum turbulence this time last year,” said Marie Grundy, sales director at West One Loans.

“Seeing further robust new business performance in a quarter that includes the typically quieter summer holiday period is very encouraging.

“The wider property and property finance markets have flattened against continued political uncertainty due to slow progress negotiating Brexit, and the prospect of interest base rate rises finally arriving.

“This new market high, therefore, reflects the underlying strength of bridging.

“At West One, we’ve seen robust growth in our bridging this year to reach around £450m of total lending and experienced monthly lending records exceeding £60m.”

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