House market enjoyed better-than-expected 2012

<p>The UK property market has experienced a better-than-expected year and progress is hoped to continue steadily in 2013.</p>

The house market enjoyed a better-than-anticipated 2012 even though the continuing economic outlook was weak throughout the 12-month period.

This is according to the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML), which revealed estimates for residential property transactions and gross advances were both up compared to the previous year, while the number of mortgages in arrears fell compared to the previous three years – but is anticipated to rise again in 2013 and 2014.

A key factor in next year's performance, the CML stated, is the Funding for Lending Scheme, which is aimed at increasing borrowing particularly among would-be first-time buyers and small businesses.

CML researcher Bob Pannell stated: "Overall … 2013 should be a year in which housing transaction numbers and mortgage lending both show a modest but tangible increase."

At 14:55 GMT, the FTSE 100 retreated by 0.6 per cent to an index value of 5921.9 points, with lenders LLoyds, Prudential and Barclays all losing more than two per cent on the index.

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