Sunday, October 1, 2023

towards 5% rates

The average rate on real estate loans over twenty years granted in August 2023 amounts to 3.92%, according to the Housing Credit Observatory/CSA. A stratospheric rise, since rates stood at 1.85% in July 2022, and only 0.99% in December 2021.

Enough to make buyers break out in a cold sweat. Because the increase in the cost of credit automatically translates into a fall in their real estate purchasing power: a couple with 4,200 euros of income could borrow 300,000 euros in 2021 (1% rate), only 249,000 euros in the first quarter of 2023 ( 3% rate). ) and 228,000 euros today (4%) according to Vousfinancer calculations.

The movement continued in September: the scales increased between 20 and 30 basis points, bringing the average rate for twenty years to 4%. Banks adjust their offer based on the conditions under which they refinance, the competition and their credit production objectives. However, the European Central Bank (ECB) has been immersed in a monetary adjustment policy since July 2022, the objective of which is to return inflation to a target level of 2%. I work for the long term, as the price increase has reached another 5.3 % in one year in the euro zone in July 2023, according to Eurostat.

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The ECB’s official rates thus rose from −0.50% in June 2022 to 4% from September 14, 2023. At the same time, ten-year interest rates are also on an upward slope, with an OAT at 10 years, the reference state bond. in the French market, around 3.20%. Consequence: banks pass on the increase in their financing costs to the rates they apply to their clients.

“Positive signs”

“Real estate loan rates could reach 5% in early 2024, before stabilizing”, estimates Cécile Roquelaure, director of studies at Empruntis. A level never reached since the end of 2008, in the midst of the financial crisis. Too bad for buyers, whose borrowing capacity will be further eroded.

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But the situation is slowly starting to change, as banks seem more willing to lend. “Since September we have felt positive signs. “Banks are beginning to half-open the credit tap to return more widely in 2024,” says Caroline Arnould, general director of the Cafpi brokerage. Rates will then be higher, allowing them to improve their margins. An observation shared by Ludovic Huzieux, co-founder of Artémis Courtage: “Banks that had been out of the market for a year began to return at the beginning of September. »

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