New housing loan commitments fell 0.9% in February

The value of new loan commitments for housing fell 0.9 per cent to $22.6 billion in February 2023 (seasonally adjusted), after a revised fall of 2.4 per cent in January, according to data released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

Dane Mead, ABS head of Finance and Wealth, said: β€œThe value of new owner-occupier loan commitments fell 1.2 per cent to $15.0 billion in February 2023, while the value of new investor loan commitments fell 0.5 per cent to $7.6 billion.

β€œHousing finance continued to decline from the record highs in January 2022, with the total value of new loan commitments falling 33 per cent since then.”

The value of owner-occupier housing loan refinancing between lenders rose 3.5 per cent to a new record high of $13.6 billion in February 2023. Borrowers continued to switch lenders for lower interest rates as theΒ RBA’s cash rateΒ rose.

The number of new owner-occupier first home buyer loan commitments fell 3.5 per cent in February 2023, after a revised fall of 4.6 per cent in January.

β€œOwner-occupier first home buyer lending continued to decline from the high reached in January 2021, to the lowest level seen since May 2017. It was also 27 per cent lower than February 2020, prior to the COVID-19 pandemic,” Mr Mead said.

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