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Norway tightens some mortgage rules, hopes to rein in Oslo prices
December 14, 2016 / 12:12 PM / 10 months ago

Norway tightens some mortgage rules, hopes to rein in Oslo prices

OSLO, Dec 14 (Reuters) - Norwegian banks will face somewhat tighter rules on their future mortgage lending, the Finance Ministry said on Wednesday, adding it would impose particular measures in the capital to rein in a strong rise in the cost of buying a home.

Borrowers should no longer be allowed to take on debt amounting to more than five times their income, and also face tougher amortisation requirements, it said.

The new rules will still allow banks to exercise flexibility and judgement for up to 10 percent of lending volumes however, thus falling short of the clamp-down proposed by the country’s banking regulator in September.

In Oslo, the flexibility will be limited to 8 percent of volumes, and anyone buying a second home must have at least 40 percent equity financing, the ministry added.

Norwegian housing prices have risen sharply in recent years, particularly in and around the capital, as demand for homes has outstripped supply. (Reporting by Terje Solsvik, editing by Ole Petter Skonnord)

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