Mortgage lending sees big rise

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Increase of just under one third in February

THE number of mortgages granted by banks in Spain rose by a little less than a third in February, say figures just released by the National Statistics institute of Spain.
Compared to the same month last year, 29.2 per cent more home loans were taken out, amounting to 21,298 mortgages.
Andalucia was the region that saw the second biggest number of new mortgages, with 4,032 agreed in February, just behind Madrid (4,066) and ahead of Catalonia (3,214).
The southern region was also very near the top of the figures when looking at year-on-year percentage rises, with a leap of 42.9 per cent, following two regions in the north – the Basque County seeing a 59.5 per cent increase and Aragon’s home loans soaring by 89.5 per cent.
Mortgages taken out in February 2015 benefitted from lower interest rates than the same month in 2014.
Statistics for mortgages contracted have seen a strong, steady rise in recent months, the year-on-year comparisons increasing in double digits for nine months now: going up by 19 per cent in June 2014; July (up 28.8 per cent); August (24 per cent); September (29 per cent); October (18 per cent); November (14 per cent); December (28.9 per cent) and January (20 per cent).
The news is good for analysts who were concerned that more than half of properties purchased in Spain last year were bought without a mortgage, suggesting they were made by investors with significant capital hoping to profit from a bottomed-out market.
Banks’ willingness to lend, and an increasing call for funding for property purchases, could be judged as a more reliable indicator of a recovering market.

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