Increase in mortgage approvals showing activity in housing market

Mortgage approvals in November 2012 up 38% on previous years

Mortgage experts have welcomed a recent jump in the number of mortgages being approved by Irish institutions and may suggest the first steps in a property market recovery. The most recent figures from the Irish Banking Federation (IBF) relating to activity in November 2012 showed that just over 2,000 loans were approved – a 38% increase from the same month in 2011.

2012 has been a buoyant year for people taking the plunge and buying property. The number of mortgages offered during the January 2012 – November 2012 period went up by 12% to over 16,340. While the increase in mortgage applications was helped by the Government’s Mortgage Interest Relief scheme, many of those approved for mortgages in November would not have completed the mortgage process in time to beat the 31st December deadline.

Indeed, there seems to be demand for mortgages. Permanent TSB have announced they are to allocate €350 million this year for mortgage lending – a sign that PTSB have confidence in the market going forward. Despite the recent pick-up in loan approvals, ratings agency Fitch is predicting a further 20 percent drop in property prices this year. Even so, experts are confident of continued rises in mortgage approvals, especially among first time buyers.

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