The Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) has called for further government action to help provide incentives for new lending and restore funding to the market.

According to the group, housing market activity will remain "extremely subdued"going into 2009, with around 200,000 fewer transactions than this year.

Meanwhile, gross mortgage lending is expected to drop from £258 billion in 2008 to just £145 billion.

A spokesperson for the CML said: "The issue is shortage of funding and we are looking at trying to restore funding to the mortgage market."

The organisation also expects the number of repossessions to reach around 75,000 in 2009, with a sizeable share expected to involve landlords on buy-to-let mortgages.

Despite this, it claimed that lenders are committed to ensuring that repossession is avoided wherever possible, adding that an increase in the number of cases is "inevitable"given the worsening economic backdrop.

Landlords were recently advised that it is "essential"to take out rental insurance in the current economic climate to avoid running into financial difficulties in cases where tenants cannot afford to pay rent.ADNFCR-2002-ID-18941573-ADNFCR

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