Richard Pike, sales and marketing director at Phoebus Software:

“As interesting as this latest credit conditions survey is, the market is changing almost daily.  What banks and building societies were seeing in the three months to the end of May is unlikely to reflect what is happening today, or even what is likely to happen tomorrow.

“The report shows that there were few changes in Q2 compared to Q1, but that lenders expect Q3 to differ in all four categories.  Given that the inflation report yesterday showed that we have exceeded the government’s target of 2% inflation again, the prospect of an increase in the base rate is back on the table.  That could have one of two effects.  Will it be another driver for people to list their property to try to beat any rise in interest rates, or will the mere thought of rising interest rates curb appetite?

“We have already seen that house prices fell for the first time in June as we approached the SDLT holiday deadline.  The upshot is that this is an unpredictable market and until the end of at least Q3 it is likely to remain so.  By then furlough will have ended and the vast majority of the population will be fully immunised. Many people will be taking stock as we ‘return to normal’, looking at their finances and, for many, quality of life.  The question now is one of long-term confidence.”