Paragon reports 207pc lending surge

The pipeline of applications and offers outstanding totalled £222.5m at the end of December 2013 and Paragon said the credit quality of the new loans written has remained “exemplary”.

The group reported operating profits of £26.9m, this compares with £23.7m for the same time period in the previous year.

At the end of December 2013, arrears across Paragon’s buy-to-let portfolio remained very low, with the three months arrears figure for the period just 0.31%, compared with 0.44% at 31 December 2012.

This compares favourably with the market level of buy-to-let arrears which according to the CML stood at 1.16% at 30 September 2013.

John Heron, managing director Paragon Mortgages, said: “We have had a fantastic start to the year with a marked step-up in buy-to-let business compared to a year earlier.

“The credit quality of the business written continues to be of a very high quality and arrears across the whole book have fallen again.

“Our landlords remain very optimistic about the rental market and have indicated that they intend to continue to grow their portfolios to meet the demands of tenants for quality rented accommodation.

“We continue to work on innovative products and improved means of delivery to facilitate this growth, and expect to remain very busy through the spring.”