Low interest rates and perkier housing construction has prompted a surge in demand for personal loans as people kit out their new homes.
Credit data provider Veda says the number of personal loan applications doubled during the September quarter compared to three months earlier, to stand 12.1 per cent than a year earlier.
However, the overall Veda consumer credit demand index rose just 6.6 per cent because strong demand for credit cards seen during the June quarter subsided in the past three months to be just 1.7 per cent up on the year.
Historically, the index provides an early indication of movements in consumer spending and retail sales.
“Lower interest rates and a big lift in housing construction are driving spending on a range of big ticket household goods, including furniture and electrical items, often financed through a personal loan,” Veda’s Angus Luffman says.
Mortgage applications – not part of the Veda index – grew at an annual rate of nine per cent in the September quarter, slower than the 12.5 per cent rate record in the previous quarter.
Mr Luffman said mortgage demand peaked in June and July and has since tailed off.
Mortgage demand tends to lead movements in house prices by around six to nine months.