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Call for new approach to mortgage regulation

UK Finance, a body representing organisations in the finance and banking sector, has called for a more coordinated approach to housing policy and the regulation of mortgages.

In its report The Changing Shape of the UK Mortgage Market, published last week, the organisation makes several key recommendations, including improved long-term coordination of housing policy and mortgage regulation at a national level, and within devolved administrations.

It also argues for government to take into account the unintended consequences of policy designed to target private sector landlords which it says can reduce the supply of rental housing and push up the cost of renting.

In its analysis of the mortgage market, UK Finance found that housing sales have plateaued in the last three years and are beginning to decline.

It also observed a switch in the mix of home purchasers with first-time buyers becoming the largest buyer group as government interventions have made buying-to-let less attractive.

In her introduction to the report, Jackie Bennett, Director of Mortgages at UK Finance, said:

"There is no doubt that the size and shape of the mortgage market has changed considerably over the last decade since the global financial crisis... At the same time, we've seen significant government intervention in the market to stimulate new home building and support first time buyers, particularly through the Help to Buy equity loan scheme."

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