More mortgage and loan applications made, says central bank

May 20th 2014:

More mortgage and loan applications made, says central bank

For the first time in eight years, Dutch banks are seeing an increase in applications for mortgages and loans, the central bank said on Tuesday.

In the first quarter of this year, more banks saw a rise in mortgage applications than a fall. According to the central bank, half of all banks expect applications to rise further in the second quarter.

Requests for loans by large companies also increased, and although applications from middle and small-sized firms continued to go down, the drop was smaller than in previous quarters.

House buyers appear to accept that prices have bottomed out, the central bank said. Starters in particular are keen to buy, with the number of mortgage applications in this sector rising above 10,000 a month, often helped by the money they can be gifted tax free by their parents.


However, house owners are lowering the value of their houses because they are postponing maintenance, estate agents’ association VBO says.

The VBO did a survey among its members and found that in 85% of cases where maintenance was postponed the value of the property had fallen because of bad paintwork, rotting window sills, cracks in walls and balconies and leaking roofs.

The survey also showed the biggest problems are in houses valued at up to €250,000. ‘A large number of these houses are already in negative equity,’ Hans van der Ploeg of the VBO told the Nos. ‘That is logical, but it exacerbates the situation.’