A recent report states Mortgage approvals in Ireland staged somewhat of a comeback in April, according to data published this morning by the Banking and Payments Federation of Ireland (BPFI).

The value of mortgage approvals grew by 20% year on year (yoy) (-3% yoy in March). Within this, the number of approvals grew by 14% yoy, with the average loan size increasing by 5% yoy.

In terms of mortgages for house purchase, approvals grew by 12% yoy in April (-8% yoy in March), led by mover-purchasers (+18% yoy) and Buy-to-Let (+32% yoy). The value of first-time mortgage approvals grew by 7% yoy, but the volume of approvals fell on an annual basis for the second consecutive month.

Goodbody Stockbrokers today said that the relative weakness in the FTB space may be reflective of modestly tighter mortgage rules enforced at the beginning of 2018. Remortgaging continues to be the fastest-growing component of new lending approvals by quite a distance, reflecting rising equity, lower mortgage rates and stiffer competition in the market.

In April, the value of re-mortgage approvals more than doubled (+104% yoy) and grew by 74% yoy in the year to date.

According to Goodbody Stockbrokers, “In the year-to-date, the value of approvals grew by 11% yoy, but this is off a relatively high comparative growth rate in 2017. An upward trend is still in place, but the momentum is not as great as seen in 2016 and 2017. We are forecasting gross lending growth of 20% in 2018 following growth of 29% in 2017.”

Business World 30/5/2018


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