British banks approve fewer home loans in July - BBA

Pedestrians walk past the Bank of England in the City of London May 15, 2014. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor

LONDON (Reuters) - British banks approved fewer home loans last month than they did in June, as tighter rules on mortgages lending introduced late in April took some of the heat out of the housing market, industry data showed on Tuesday.

The British Bankers' Association said its members approved 42,792 loans for house purchases in July, down from June's three-month high of 43,180 and below an average in the first three months of 2014 of just under 47,000.

Mortgage approvals are still about 12 percent higher than July last year, though the amount of net new mortgage lending in July - some 821 million pounds - was the lowest since January.

Britain's Financial Conduct Authority required lenders to introduce tighter affordability checks on mortgages in late April, and the Bank of England imposed further restrictions on how much most Britons can borrow in June.

"Mortgage approval processes have now settled after the introduction of the Mortgage Market Review, to a typical level of around 40,000 mortgages approved a month for house purchase," the BBA said in a statement.

The BBA data does not include mortgages approved by building societies, a major part of the market. Bank of England data for all British mortgage lending in July is due on Sept. 1.

(Reporting by David Milliken; Editing by Louise Ireland)