Irish mortgage approvals grew at a solid, albeit more moderate rate in April, according to data published this morning by the Banking and Payments Federation of Ireland (BPFI).

The number of approvals grew by 12% year on year (yoy) in April (87% yoy in March) with the value of approvals increasing by 20% yoy (103% yoy in March) due to larger average loan sizes.

First time buyers (FTB) and mover-purchasers (MP) continue to dominate new mortgage approvals, accounting for c.90% of the total.

Approvals for FTBs continued to grow at the fastest pace in April, up by 17% yoy in volume terms. MP approvals grew by 2% yoy, while buy-to-let mortgage approvals grew by 17% yoy, but from a very low base.

According to Goodbody Stockbrokers, “In our recent Health Check, we estimated that the mortgage market could reach €13.5bn per annum over the medium-term. This is under the assumption that new house completions reach 30,000 units per annum which triggers an increase in housing turnover. While the monthly trends can be noisy, progress towards a “state of normality” in the Irish mortgage market continues.”