Mortgage Index – December 2011


Record 2 in 5 new mortgages for investors

Mortgage borrowers defied the global gloom in November with the RBA’s quarter of a percent rate cut seeing the number of mortgages processed increase by 18.4% over October figures, according to AFG, Australia’s largest mortgage broker.

AFG processed over $2.9 billion of mortgages in November, its highest such figure since March 2009.

AFG has 10% of the national mortgage market (Source: ABS data and AFG figures). The company’s data is usually indicative of the data published by the ABS six weeks later.

Growth was particularly strong in Victoria, where mortgages processed leaped 26.7% and Queensland (20.8%). Elsewhere, growth was recorded in NSW (16.4%), WA (15.8%) and SA (8.7%).

Mark Hewitt, General Manager of Sales and Operations says: ‘While November is seasonally a strong month for mortgages, the rate cut has certainly stimulated demand. We’re experiencing the paradox that weaker global economic conditions and lower rates, is good news for Australian property buyers – at least for now. It’s significant that investors and first home buyers are leading the action. Many had been fearful that we were locked into a scenario of constant rate hikes. The November rate cut proved to be a real a turning point and the outlook is very different now.’

Property investors accounted for almost 2 out of every 5 mortgages sold in November (38.4%) – an all time record for the AFG Mortgage Index, which goes back six years. Investors were especially active in New South Wales (44.6%) and Victoria (39.8%), but also strong in Queensland (37.7%), Western Australia (32.1%) and South Australia (30.0%).

Fixed rate loans came off their high of 20.4% of the product mix in October to 17.2% in November – a figure still well above the long term average.

Competition took a further hit however as the lender mix shifted back in favour of major lenders who held 80.4% market share, up from 78.9% in October. First Home Buyers continue to be the most supportive of non major lenders (28.7%) and investors the least (17.4%).

Download – December Mortgage Index – National

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