According to the latest figures from the Bank of England, 58,242 home loans were approved in May 2013, up from 54,354 in April, which is the largest number of approved mortgages at any time in the past three and a half years. The British Bankers’ Association (BBA) said mortgage approvals had increased by 24% in May, compared with a year earlier. Philip Shaw, an economist with Investec said “The Funding for Lending scheme is helping to increase mortgage availability and push down mortgage rates.”Despite the positive figures from the Bank of England, the number of mortgage approvals is still less than half what it was 10 years ago. 133,000 mortgages were approved by banks and building societies in December 2003, which shows that there is still a long way to go until the market is fully recovered. Mark Harris of the mortgage broker SPF clients said “The health of the housing sector is showing a slow and steady improvement but it is by no means out of intensive care just yet.”The contents of this article are intended for general information purposes only and shall not be deemed to be, or constitute legal advice. We cannot accept responsibility for any loss as a result of acts or omissions taken in respect of this article.Setfords Solicitors are a national full service law firm, with property solicitors in Bromley and across the country.