Only 2% of households have renegotiated their mortgage despite the rise in interest rates

A total of 101,857 households have made modifications to their mortgages since interest rates began to rise in the eurozone in July 2022, representing only 2% of the more than 5.6 million families subject to financial obligations on his living place.

According to data from the National Institute of Statistics (INE) consulted by EFE, 54,313 households have made changes to their mortgages in the first half of 2023, 20% less than in the same period of 2022, when 65,641 were registered and have not yet been were feeling the effects of rising interest rates.

Precisely, this reduction fits with the collapse of the mortgage firm, whose number fell 28% in June compared to this month in 2022.

The users most affected by the decisions of the European Central Bank (ECB), in charge of the financial policy of the eurozone, are those who in recent years signed a variable rate mortgage.

According to the Spanish Mortgage Association, more than 4 million homes were subject to this type of mortgage in June 2022, 70.5% of the more than 5.6 million active loans in said month, a percentage that in 2017 exceeded the 91% of the total.

Thus, the number of variable mortgages in Spain is around 3.95 million. Based on this figure, the percentage of households that have renegotiated their mortgage to try to improve conditions since in July 2022 the ECB raised interest rates for the first time in more than a decade to begin an upward path that continues today. It does not reach 3%.

This same week the ECB raised its interest rates for the tenth consecutive time since July 2022, by a quarter of a point, to 4.5%, the highest since May 2001, because it expects higher inflation due to the price of energy and despite the fact that the economy is stagnating and it is feared that it will enter a recession.

To curb the effects of rising interest rates on the pockets of Spanish families, the Government agreed with the banks to establish a code of good practices that seeks to protect the most vulnerable families with measures that facilitate repayment. of loans or changing your mortgage to a fixed rate.

This initiative, which began to be applied in January 2023, has caused a 14% increase in the number of registration changes in the first six months of the year compared to the immediately previous semester, when 47,544 were recorded.

However, not all the changes would be caused by the code of good practices, since the number of applications to join this program received by banks was around 33,000, as reported at the beginning of summer by the first vice president of the Government and Minister of Economy , Nadia Calvino.

This is a figure well below that anticipated by the ministry, which put the number of households that would benefit from the agreement with the financial entities at one million.

Bank changes go up and renegotiations go down

The government measure included the possibility of going from a variable interest rate to a fixed one without any cost, as long as it was done in the same bank.

However, novations, any change in the conditions of the mortgage loan with the same bank, would have decreased in this period according to data extracted from the INE, which includes homes, but also rural and urban properties.

Thus, renegotiations stood at 8,633 in June, 44% less than in the same month of the previous year, in which 12,440 were recorded.

Debtor substitutions also decreased by 10%, going from 559 to 505.

On the contrary, mortgage transfers to another entity did increase, specifically by 8%, from 1,877 the previous year to 2,038 in the last record provided by the INE.

The maximums marked by novations are far away, 45,743 in September 2009; debtor subrogations, 5,377 in September 2008, and creditor subrogations, 7,880 in June 2009, driven by the economic crisis of 2008.

Tom Roeser Staff

Tom Roeser Staff

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