Despite having the highest variable mortgage rate of the majors and reducing its maximum loan-to-value (LVR) for new borrowers to 87 per cent, Westpac continues to increase its market share month on month.
According to Retail Finance Intelligence’s (RFI) Monthly Mortgage Report, Westpac experienced the largest increase in market share for owner-occupier loans in December 2009, with a 0.16 per cent increase to a market share of 18.89 per cent.
St George was the only other ‘big five’ institution to experience an increase in market share, with a 0.04 per cent increase to 8.36 per cent.
CBA’s market share fell 0.03 per cent to a market share of 25.52 per cent, while ANZ and NAB both saw a 0.04 per cent decrease in their shares, resulting in a share of 15.50 per cent and 14.66 per cent respectively.
RFI research director Alan Shields said Westpac’s decision to target first home buyers at the start of the year had helped the major to grow its market share.
“Westpac was one of the first of the big banks to really target first home buyers, which represented a large portion of the borrower market in 2009,” Mr Shields told The Adviser.
“Despite raising their rates above the Reserve Bank, I expect Westpac to continue to build its market share throughout 2010, as there will still be a healthy number of first home buyers entering the market.”
While Mr Shields said the common line of thought was that first home buyers would peter off, he expects them to continue to make their mark on the property market, supported by investors and up-graders.
“2010 should be another good year for the mortgage market, I expect there to be a lot of activity,” he said.
“From what I am hearing, properties are still selling for well above the asking price, which will send loan sizes higher and spell good news for brokers.”
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