Thursday, January 30 12:59:29
There was an increase of 4.1pc in the number of new mortgage approvals last year compared to 2012 and a 6.1pc increase in the total value of approved mortgages, according to latest figures from the Irish Banking Federation (IBF).
This brings to 18,520 the total number of mortgage approvals during 2013. The vast majority of these - 17,058 - were for house purchase, in itself representing an increase of 6.1pc over the previous year.
A total of 1,762 mortgages were approved in December, of which 1,639 (93pc) were for house purchase.
The number of mortgages approved increased by 3pc from December 2012 to December 2013 but fell by 2.2pc on a monthly basis between November and December 2013.
The value of mortgages approved in December was E317 million of which E305 million (96pc) was for house purchase.
The value of mortgage approvals increased by 10.1pc from December 2012 to December 2013 but fell by 1.2pc on a monthly basis between November and December 2013.
Commenting on the figures, IBF Chief Executive, Noel Brett stated: "The picture for 2013 shows growth in both volume and value in the level of mortgage approvals over 2012 and this upward trend is welcome. With November traditionally the peak month for mortgage activity, the month-on-month decline in approvals between November and December is to be expected. Banks are well positioned to lend to customers who meet the criteria for a mortgage - the key consideration being the borrower's capacity to repay."