Loan rejections cause drop in housing transfers in Q1
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Loan rejections cause drop in housing transfers in Q1

A digital ad promotes mortgages at Money Expo 2023. (Photo courtesy of Money Expo Facebook page)
A digital ad promotes mortgages at Money Expo 2023. (Photo courtesy of Money Expo Facebook page)

Home loan rejections caused a dip in housing transfers nationwide in the first quarter, dropping to the lowest point in six years and marking five consecutive quarters of decline.

Vichai Viratkapan, acting director-general of the Real Estate Information Center (REIC), said nationwide residential demand contracted in the first quarter, with transfers declining 13.8% year-on-year, totalling 72,954 units.

"The first-quarter decline not only persisted from the first quarter of 2023, but also indicated a further decline year-on-year, following decreases of 0.8%, 4.4%, 6.9% and 12.7% in the first, second, third and fourth quarters of last year," he said.

The value of transfers decreased by 13.4% to 209 billion baht, marking three consecutive quarters of year-on-year dips since the third quarter of 2023, down 2.6% in the third quarter of last year and 9.7% in the fourth quarter.

While the number of transfers in the first quarter was the lowest in 25 quarters since the first quarter of 2018, the value was the lowest since the second quarter of 2019, noted the REIC.

Newly released home loans nationwide followed the same trend as housing transfers, reaching their lowest point in 25 quarters at 122 billion baht. This marked a year-on-year decrease of 20.5%, the largest decline in more than six years.

"The key issue was financial institutions tightening their criteria for home loan approval," said Mr Vichai.

"High interest rates aren't a concern for many segments. Their primary concern lies in securing mortgage loan approval."

By category, low-rise housing transfers posted the largest year-on-year dip for the period, declining by 18.9% to 49,423 units worth a combined 146 billion baht, down 14.6%.

The number of condo transfers declined only 0.6% year-on-year to 23,531 units worth 62.9 billion baht, a 10.7% decrease, said the centre.

"All price ranges, except for condos priced between 1 and 3 million baht, experienced a decline in transfers, attributed to a significant number of lower-priced condos launched in 2022 being completed in the first quarter, boosting the number of units within this price range," he said.

In the first quarter of 2024, the number of condo units priced between 1 and 3 million baht transferred nationwide totalled 7,295 units, constituting 31% of the total condo units transferred during the period.

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