As the housing bubble increased in size in the mid 2000s the number of mortgage providers and products that people could choose from understandably ballooned alongside it.

Many of these mortgage products were aimed at the higher loan to value end of the market as house prices were seen to be on a one way trajectory.

But after the credit crunch some of the smaller mortgage providers pulled out of the UK market and the remaining lenders downsized their offerings to the extent that, according to Moneyfacts, in 2009 only 1,209 home-loans were available.

That number has now risen says the comparison site to 3,305 mortgage products that lenders are now offering. That is the highest level since February 2008.

Moneyfacts did say that it was still a difficult market place but these figures show that banks are open and ready for business.

Michelle Slade, spokesperson for Moneyfacts, said "Rising product numbers bring more competition, which has brought more keenly priced mortgage deals to the market. Lenders are becoming more accommodating with their lending criteria, which bodes well for increasing the competitiveness in the mortgage market. Average mortgage rates have fallen to all-time lows, while at the same time deposit requirements are easing."

But she added that more products did not automatically mean more overall lending as affordability will be the driver.

Lenders will also be trying to increase market share by targeting mortgage holders with good credit histories and low loan to value borrowing.

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