People pay off mortgages earlier – Westpac

New Zealand households are paying down their mortgages earlier, according to Westpac.

Friday, February 18th 2022, 11:53AM

by Eric Frykberg

The bank said 68.1% of its home loan customers were ahead of scheduled mortgage payments at the end of last year.

That was a jump from 65.9% a year earlier.

The median value of these advance payments was $11,022, equivalent to 10.5 months of payments.

That was up from $9,657 and 9 months at the end of 2020.

Westpac NZ General Manager of Consumer Banking and Wealth Ian Hankins said early repayments of debt or building up savings gave people a buffer against economic disruption caused by Covid 19, or rising interest rates.

“These figures are backed up by customer survey data showing 21% of homeowners have spent more on paying their mortgages off during the pandemic,” Hankins said.

Earlier surveys showed some people were spending more money locally on consumer goods because the pandemic stopped them from spending on overseas travel.

The Westpac figures show they are also spending more money on paying down debt and this was consistent across all regions of New Zealand.

The total value of early repayments for Westpac NZ customers increased by $637m.

Tags: Westpac

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