More new mortgages extended in 2023 final quarter

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Banks and insurance companies processed 29% fewer mortgage requests last year, according to data collection agency HDN. In particular the market for people who wanted to change or increase their mortgage to pay for rebuilding collapsed as interest rates rose, HDN said.

In total, the sector dealt with 368,000 mortgage requests last year, compared with 520,000 in 2022. The number of totally new mortgages for buyers was limited to 8%, HDN said.

There was, however, recovery in the final quarter of the year, with the total number of mortgages rising almost 9% above the same period in 2022.

The number of new mortgages agreed rose by 15.5% and “this shows that the sellers’ market is back with us,” HDN director Reinier van der Heijden said. First-time buyers accounted for most of the new mortgages agreed in the final three months of the year.

Interest rates have now been going down for several weeks and it is possible to agree a mortgage for less than 4% with several banks. Experts expect a further decline in the coming weeks.

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