12 Nov 2013

Aucklanders to feel squeeze as mortgage rates rise

10:33 am on 12 November 2013

Aucklanders are expected to feel the pinch more than most when - as forecast - mortgage rates start to rise.

The Reserve Bank has signalled it will start hiking rates in the first half of next year, and analysts say mortgages could rise steadily to about 8% by 2015.

Mortgages already average $400,000 in the Auckland region's overheated property market and some commentators warn household budgets will be stretched as interest costs rise.

Mortgage broker Geoff Bawden calculates for every $100,000 borrowed, a 1% rise will add $64 to a weekly mortgage payment.

But Mr Bawden says as a result of the 2008 recession people and banks have been more cautious about taking on a mortage, and he's not expecting it to result in a flood of people losing their homes.

Higher interest rates will also be good news for savers, who've had to endure poor returns in recent times.