31 Aug 2010

Smaller deposits now required for home loans

6:16 am on 31 August 2010

Banks have eased mortgage lending conditions in the face of a stagnant housing market.

In the three months to 20 August, home loan approvals were down 25% on the same period last year.

Banks required home loan deposits of 20% as lending criteria tightened following the global credit crunch.

But a mortgage broker says that has eased in recent weeks, with banks lending on deposits of 10%.

However, LoanPlan owner Christine Lockie says they are still careful about who they lend to.

Westpac, Kiwibank and ANZ-National confirm they will approve funding of up to 90%, on a case by case basis.

Property consultant Brian Dalley says he expects lending criteria will ease further as banks seek ways to revive the mortgage market.

Massey University banking studies senior lecturer Claire Mathews says banks want new business, but the easing also suggests they believe housing prices won't drop as far as was feared.