Tight lending constraints remain a barrier to most first-time buyers with most typically providing a deposit of 25% in February, a new record.
But frst-time buyers are returning to the housing market with 9,400 loans made in February - a 7% monthly increase. The figure is still significantly less than the 17,400 in February 2008.
General lending activity remains very weak compared to historical levels, running at around one-third of the average February total of 76,000 loans for house purchase between 2002 and 2007.
First-time buyers typically borrowed 2.95 times their income, down from three times in January. The average first-time buyer loan was ВЈ95,000, down from ВЈ97,000 in January and ВЈ114,000 in February last year.ADVERTISEMENT
This decline reflects the change in house prices over the same period and the growth in the size of first-time buyer deposits.
Lower income multiples and mortgage rates have made affordability considerably easier for those able to get a mortgage. Interest payments consumed 15.4% of the average first-time buyerвЂ™s income in February, down from 20.1% in February 2008 and the lowest proportion since June 2004.
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