The number of first-time buyers in 2012 reached the largest yearly total in five years - with the market now said to be primed for growth."Lenders seem to have a renewed confidence in the housing market, and if they continue to increase their commitment, 2013 will be a real year of progress for prospective home buyers."
Peter Williams, executive director of the Intermediary Mortgage Lenders Association, said: "With one in 40 taking out 95% mortgages, compared with less than one in 100 a year ago, it is clear that lenders' confidence in market conditions is returning.
"The impact of the Funding for Lending scheme is not only boosting volumes and lowering pricing, but also encouraging lenders to consider higher levels of risk in order to help more borrowers on to the property ladder. Already one in five first-time buyers are borrowing 90% or more."
A total of 216,200 first-time buyers became home owners in 2012, according to the CML.
It is the first time the annual total has exceeded 200,000 since 2007, and represents a year-on-year rise of 12% on 2011 when 193,000 first-time buyer loans were advanced.
In December 19,100 loans were advanced to first-time buyers, a 12% drop compared to November but up by 3% on December 2011.
"First-time buyers in particular have benefited from the effects of better funding conditions and the Funding for Lending scheme, with the number of new people moving into home ownership in 2012 reaching the highest level for five years.
"This, along with other factors, confirms that lenders really are open for business."