By Jonathan Davies

The housing market is slowing down. The housing market is still showing rapid growth. It's slowing down. It's still growing. That's the confusion surround the UK's housing market at the moment.

Various figures point towards the market, which has shown huge growth over the past 12 months, slowing down. And other suggest it is still growing at a strong pace.

But mortgage lending in July reached its highest level since August 2008. The Council for Mortgage Lenders (CML) said £19.1bn was lent to buyers, a 7% rise on June and a 15% increase compared to July last year.

Caroline Offord of the CML said that mortgage lending continued to grow at a robust pace despite the introduction of tougher guidelines aimed at limiting the number of mortgage approvals under the Mortgage Market Review (MMR).

"Economic conditions have strengthened, but while the Bank of England has signalled an improved economic outlook since May, headwinds remain," she said.

Ms Offord said mortgage lending reached £10.5bn in the first half of the year, a "strong figure" considering lending barely reached £10bn for a full year in recent years.

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