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First-time buyers increase share of slowing mortgage market

Over 90,000 loans drawn down to date in 2008
Mover-Purchasers also grow market share
Residential Investment Loans record drop in share

The IBF/PwC Mortgage Market Profile published today shows that, while the overall mortgage market continues to slow, first-time buyers (FTBs) have increased their share to a record high of 23.3% by value and 19.9% by volume in Q3 of this year. This represents the second successive quarterly increase in the FTB market share, rising a full 4.7 percentage points since the first quarter.

Mover-purchasers have also increased their market share of the overall market. At 25.8% by value, they now represent the largest segment of the market. In contrast, the residential investment letting (RIL) segment records a further drop – down to 11.4% in Q3 – in the share of the number of new mortgages issued, as does the re-mortgage (switching) segment.

The IBF/PwC Mortgage Market Profile also shows that over 90,000 new mortgages have been issued thus far in 2008, in a market that continues to reflect slowdown in activity. Some 28,000 new mortgages were issued in Q3, which is 20.5% less than in Q2 and 31.8% less than in the same quarter last year.

Also, for the first time since the series began, the average loan size has fallen across all segments of the market – reflecting the fall in house prices nationally.

Commenting on the data, IBF Chief Executive, Pat Farrell, stated:

“The continued slowdown in mortgage market activity overall is hardly surprising given the very challenging economic environment that prevails. Notwithstanding this, the first-time buyer share of the overall market continues to grow and this is to be welcomed; as is evidence of improving affordability as house prices continue to decline. The mortgage market continues to grow – albeit at a slower pace – with 90,000 new mortgages issued to date this year adding up to a mortgage market now valued at €147.5 billion.”

The IBF/PwC Mortgage Market Profile can be viewed on the web at www.ibf.ie.

Note: The Irish Banking Federation (IBF) is the leading representative body for the banking and financial services sector in Ireland, representing over 70 member institutions and associates, including licensed domestic and foreign banks and institutions operating in the financial marketplace here.
Further Information: Felix O’Regan, Head of PR and Public Affairs, IBF, tel. 6715311, 087 6481644

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