Hagan Homes handed over 12 properties in June alone but says mortgage lenders’ decision to increase deposits is putting first time buyers at a disadvantage
Ballyclare homebuilder, Hagan Homes, says the reopening of the property market has yielded positive results for the industry but stricter deposit demands from mortgage lenders is hindering the process for many first-time buyers.
The company, which is currently onsite with six developments and due to begin construction on three new sites in Dundonald, Carrickfergus and Strabane this month, said demand for their properties has been extremely positive since lock down restrictions were eased.
High volumes of enquiries and sales over June were “overwhelming” said Chairman James Hagan.
“Since we reopened our show homes in the middle of June, our sales agents have been inundated with bookings and enquiries. There is huge interest in our properties and that seems to be the case across the industry.
“That demand, for us, can be quantified by the number of sales we are making. We handed over 12 new properties and recorded 20 new bookings in June, compared to nine bookings in June last year.
“The current level of interest is also highlighted by the page views we are seeing online for our developments.
“Traffic to our sites online during the last two months has recorded over 80,000 views, more than double that of the same period last year. It’s activity like this that is testament that people in Northern Ireland are keen to move home or purchase their first property but we need mortgage lenders to work with the industry to ensure demand translates into even more sales by offering 90% mortgages that were available pre lockdown.”
Mr Hagan says prior to lockdown first time buyers benefitted from 90% and 95% mortgage packages making access to the property market easier but today those offers are no longer available.
He added: “Our current purchasers are not getting the mortgages they need. We have really strong bookings and interest in the properties but with no 90% mortgages available from banks and mortgage providers this means our purchasers need to have bigger deposits.
“The majority of our buyers are first time buyers and that presents an affordability issue. We would urge providers to review this as soon as possible to keep the market in positive territory.”