Despite the sharp drop in long-term interest rates, banks are hardly cutting mortgage rates.
The Belgian 10-year interest rate peaked at 2.5% in mid-June, But it has fallen sharply since then: It is trading at around 1.5% for a week due to fears of a slowing economy and an impending recession.
though, This drop in rates has not yet translated into a drop in mortgage rates, From the rate comparisons of Immotheker and Hypotheekwinkel.be. In Immotheker, The average interest rate for a 20-year loan has remained between 2.7 and 2.8% in recent weeks. These are mortgage loans where borrowers borrow a maximum of 80% of the home purchase price. For comparison: in February the interest rate was still 1.5%. According to guide-epargne.be, which collects credit offers customers have obtained from different banks, The 20-year rate currently negotiated is 2.57% on average.
“Banks want to lock in their profit margins.”
“Banks want to lock in their profit margins, even if it has to be said that they also waited a few months too long to raise rates,” explains John Romain, CEO of Immotheker Finotheker.
For Renaat Acke from Hypotheekwinkel.be, Banks react to lower interest rates more slowly than to higher rates. “Banks traditionally wait for a certain time To see if the change in interest rates is sustainable. But it’s clear they’re looking for facts more than ever,” he says. According to Acke, it’s not just about profit margin, it’s about other things as well. “Due to fears of price hikes again, many customers have speeded up their files in recent weeks., which led to some delays in processing with the banks. In addition, there is a lot of vacation time, which means that the delay is longer. As a result, the need for additional files is reduced.
“I advise clients to wait until September, if they can wait.”
Credit broker expects competition to resume in September. I advise clients to wait until September, if they can wait. Each bank commits to a certain amount of savings that it is willing to convert into mortgages. If the demand for credit appears to be slowing, steps are often taken to bring the standard up. Furthermore, profit margins on home loans have not been exceptionally low for several years. There is definitely room for lower prices. Even when interest rates were close to zero, the rates, and thus the spreads, were between 1% and 1.5%,” explains Akie.
No bank we contacted expects a price drop. “A price change is not planned at the moment, as we say for example on the part of Belfius. However, The development of interest rates is closely monitoredso it is always possible to make price changes.”
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