In a further sign of both renewed activity in the housing market and increased willingness on the part of Irish banks to extend credit, mortgage approvals rose almost 30 per cent in December, new data from the Irish Banking Federation showed today.
The IBF mortgage approvals report showed a total of 1,446 mortgages were approved by lenders in Ireland during the month, with a value of €234 million.
That translates into a rise of 29.6 per cent in the number of mortgages approved compared with the same month in 2011, and a 29.3 per cent rise in terms of value.
The figures indicate renewed activity in the sector, the organisation said. The majority of the approvals were for the purchase of property, with 8 per cent for remortgaging properties and top-ups on existing home loans.
However, the month-on-month figures declined, a fall that was attributed to fewer work days in December and the likely front-loading of activity in November ahead of changes to mortgage interest relief.