Last year saw record lending for Saffron Building Society. Its end-of-year report revealed an 89 per cent increase in the value of completions, compared to 2019.
The mutual attributes the success to a variety of specialist lending and an unprecedented demand caused by a return to 95 per cent first-time buyer products by the middle of the year.
The new first-time buyer products lasted just 48 hours before they had to be withdrawn after a 1622 per cent increase in DIP activity, and a 560 per cent increase in first-time buyer enquiries.
Residential mortgages – home movers and remortgages – saw a 104.9 per cent uplift in lending value as the stamp duty land tax holiday added buoyancy to the market.
CEO Colin Field said: “What a year 2020 turned out to be! Nobody was prepared for what was to come during a pandemic, but the market remained buoyant, supported with the SDLT holiday, and it turned out to be a record year.
“We are delighted at the substantial growth of certain specialist products such as the ExPat BTL range – which was substantially boosted by the SDLT holiday. Also, the rise in development finance applications which led to an formidable increase in lending in that area.
“Twenty-twenty was not just a boosted year for revenue and customers, but also industry recognition for the society. It was awarded Building Society of the Year, fighting off the world’s largest building society at the MoneyAge Awards 2020 – just one of a cabinet boosting number of accolades for the year.”