Mortgage revenue (-9.1%) and the number of mortgages sold (-12.5%) fell sharply
Compared to the same period last year, mortgage revenue fell by 12.5 percent in the second quarter of 2019, as consultancy firm IG&H’s Mortgage Update points out. Since the average mortgage loan only grows to a limited extent, mortgage revenue is also considerably lower than a year ago (-9.1 percent). As a result, this is the third consecutive quarter in which the mortgage market is shrinking on an annual basis.
In the past quarter, the average mortgage loan rose to a record amount of 317,000 euros – only a slight increase (+0.5 percent) compared to the first quarter of 2019 and a clear indication that growth of the mortgage loan is decreasing.
“There are signs across the board that the trend of strong growth in the mortgage market, which has persisted for years, seems to be broken,” says Joppe Smit, who works at consultancy and implementation firm IG&H. “This is the third consecutive quarter in which we observe shrinkage on an annual basis, although the second quarter of 2019 was better than the first three months of the year. Record year 2018 seems to remain unparalleled, which will put an end to the consecutive growth of the past five years.”
Mortgage refinancers grow increasingly important
Most mortgages (more than 31,000) are still taken out by existing homeowners. This is an 8-percent increase compared to the previous quarter. Mortgage refinancers show the strongest quarterly growth with 13 percent. “The number of mortgage refinancers continues to grow,” says Smit. “Mortgage lenders and consultants that specifically target this group can take advantage of this. On the other hand, it makes banks with large mortgage portfolios vulnerable. They will need to do more to retain these customers.”
Mortgage is one click away with an app
A notable trend in the mortgage market is the growing interest of banks and insurers in simplifying mortgage applications. The market is in the early stages of a digital data transition. “Right now, it’s not yet possible to take out a new mortgage on the sole basis of digital data,” says Smit. “Several sources with reliable and verified data have now been unlocked, but the number of sources should be increased. In addition, mortgage lenders should adjust their processes and systems in such a way that digital applications can also be processed immediately. It’s simply a matter of time before we can submit a complete mortgage application with a few clicks.”
IG&H is one of the initiators of ‘Handig!’ (Handy!). The purpose of this partnership between HDN, ING, NHG, Florius, ABN Amro, Rabobank, De Hypotheker, and IG&H is to make the process of applying for a mortgage as fast and complete as possible based on digital, validated source data. “We see that more and more parties are exploring digital possibilities,” says Smit. “DUO, for example, experiments with possibilities to make government data easier to share, but other parts of the government also follow these developments with interest. Developments will accelerate once they get on board, too.”