The number of mortgage approvals made to home buyers jumped to a 14-month high in May, as the property market remained "buoyant", banks have reported.

Some 42,530 mortgages with a total value of £7bn were approved for house purchase last month, marking the highest number since March 2014, figures from the British Bankers' Association (BBA) show.

Borrowing using credit cards, personal loans and overdrafts saw annual growth of 5% in May.

This is the highest rate seen since autumn 2010 and reflects "strong consumer confidence", the BBA said.

The report - which does not contain regional figures - said that net borrowing using personal loans has expanded notably over the past 12 months.

Richard Woolhouse, chief economist at the BBA, said: "Household borrowing remains robust and this is indicative of the wider recovery we're seeing in the economy.

"The increase in mortgage approvals this month is consistent with the trend we've seen since the start of the year.

"The numbers show that the property market remains buoyant after the general election.

"Fierce competition between lenders means that there are some great mortgage deals available from the high street banks."

And Mr Woolhouse added: "Personal borrowing by British families also seems to be strong.

"The uptake of personal loans and credit card borrowing is further proof of consumers' confidence."

SOURCE: Belfast Telegraph