Record levels of first-time mortgages approved in Feb

March 28, 2024

Mortgage approvals for first-time buyers hit a record annualised high in February.

Figures from Banking and Payments Federation of Ireland (BPFI) show that in the year to the end of last month, first time buyers were given the green light for mortgages worth a total of almost €9 billion.

During the month itself, 3,582 mortgages were approved, up 9.8% on January and 6% versus the same month a year ago.

First time buyers made up nearly 61% of that and mover purchasers accounted for 19%.

The total value of the mortgages approved during the month was just over €1 billion, up 10% on January and 7% on February of 2023.

First time purchasers accounted for 63% of that and mover purchasers for 22%.

“Our latest report shows that the mortgage market regained positive momentum in February with 6% year-on-year growth in mortgage approval volumes and 7% year-on-year growth in approval values,” said Brian Hayes, chief executive of BPFI.

“First-time buyers continued to drive the market, with 2,171 FTB mortgages approved in February valued at €640m, a jump of 14.7% and 19.8% year on year in volume and value terms and the highest February levels since the data series began in 2011,” he said.

Mr Hayes added that 12,355 Help to Buy applications were made to the Revenue Commissioners in the first two months of the year, indicating strong ongoing demand from first time buyers.

“By contrast, we seen a continued decrease in mover purchase volumes, which dropped by 8.4% year on year to 695, the lowest February level since 2016,” he stated.

“This has ongoing implications for the supply of second hand homes to the market which has being slowing down in recent months and the Central Statistics Office reported a 6% year on year drop in household purchases of existing homes in January.”

The data also shows that re-mortgaging or switching activity rose by 0.5% in volume terms year-on-year and fell by 10.7% in value in the same period.

Article Source – Record levels of first-time mortgages approved in Feb – RTE

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