Press release

Building societies perform well in first quarter of 2018

Released today, lending and savings figures from the BSA for Q1 2018 show that building societies were accountable for 43% of the growth in the mortgage market, and took 40% of cash savings deposits between January and March.

Building society mortgage lending Q1 2018

  • Building societies hold outstanding mortgage balances of £302.9bn, a 22% market share, and up 5% on the £289.1bn at the end of Q1 2017.
  • Gross lending was £15.8bn, a 26% market share, and up 5% on the £15.1bn in Q1 2017.
  • Net lending was £4.2bn, a 43% market share, and up 7% on the £3.9bn in Q1 2017.
  • Building societies approved 113,350 new mortgage loans, a 33% market share, and up 1% on the 112,556 loans in Q1 2017.
  • Building societies lent to 26,673 first-time buyers, up 10% on the 24,343 in Q1 2017.

Building society savings balances Q1 2018

  • Societies hold savings balances of £271.7bn, an 18% market share, and up 3% on the £263.6bn at the end of Q1 2017.
  • Savings balances increased by £3.2bn, a 40% market share, and up 220% on the £1.0bn increase in Q1 2017.
  • Cash ISA balances grew by £2.8bn. Banks saw cash ISA balances decrease by £0.9bn. Societies have a share of 36% of all cash ISAs deposits.

Commenting Robin Fieth, Chief Executive at the BSA said:

“Building societies continued to play a strong role in supporting homebuyers and savers in the first quarter of 2018. Societies clearly have a proposition that appeals to consumers, winning market share despite subdued consumer confidence, and strong competition from the big banks and new entrants.

“For many borrowers who do not meet the standard criteria set by the largest lenders, building societies are often able to help as they can assess borrowers on an individual basis. Societies have a reputation for, and proven track record in lending across the spectrum from first-time buyers to older borrowers, salaried employees to contractors, and to those with more complex needs.

“In market terms consumers are clearly cautious about buying a new home. There is still substantial uncertainty around the UK’s future relationship with the EU and the likely impact the outcome will have on the wider economy.

“Households struggled to save last year as wage growth was outpaced by rising consumer prices, but this is beginning to reverse, and households may now begin to find it easier to save. Some of the turbulence in stock markets earlier in the year may have also contributed to more being put into savings accounts in the first quarter.”


Hilary McVitty, Tel: 020 7520 5926 /07507 837 326

Notes to editors

Download building society mortgage lending figures here.

Download building society savings figures here.

Further reading: Building society savers £775 million better off in 2017

Further reading: Robin Fieth BSA Conference speech 2018



The BSA Team

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