Central Bank regulations should ensure property market is accessible to first-time buyers

“As we await an imminent decision from the Central Bank on new mortgage rules, I am hopeful that we will see some changes to the original proposal to ensure that mortgages remain accessible to first-time buyers” says Alan Farrell, Fine Gael TD for Dublin Fingal.

“Compelling first-time buyers to come up with a whopping 20 per cent of the value of their mortgage is overly restrictive and would undoubtedly prevent many young families getting on the property ladder. This is particularly the case in my own constituency of Dublin Fingal where house prices are on the rise and the population is growing.

“In December we learned that mortgage approvals have jumped by 42 per cent as first time buyers rushed to beat the new lending restrictions.

“The Government has made clear its view that moving too soon on mortgage regulations could prove counterproductive. These changes would force prospective buyers to save for longer and they would therefore hit the recovering property market.

“This view has, this week, been supported by the IMF who said that regulations such as those requiring most first-time buyers to have a 20 per cent deposit should only be introduced gradually to support the recovery.

“I know that the Central Bank is considering contributions from the consultation process and that a decision on the issue is due very soon. I have made clear my view that the initial proposals went too far too soon and I am hopeful that common sense will prevail to the benefit of hard working young people who have sacrificed so much in recent years and who have been working tirelessly to get their deposits together.”