GOVERNMENT Housing Bank yesterday launched a housing-loan programme for civil servants offering a four-year fixed interest rate that is the lowest in the market.
Deputy Finance Minister Wisudhi Srisuphan said the ministry hoped that the programme would help support economic growth in the second half after the ministry in the first half launched the Pracha Rath housing scheme for low-income earners.
The government-officer segment should also be able to access low-interest housing loans, he said, adding that programmes like this involved with housing proved to have a multiplier effect on economic growth.
The ratio of household debt to GDP in the first quarter was at 81.1 per cent, lowest in 13 quarters. It is a positive indicator for a rebound of people's purchasing power.
GH Bank president Chatchai Sirilai said the bank had budgeted Bt30 billion for the housing-loan programme for civil servants and state-enterprise officers.
For the first four months years of the loan, the interest rate will be fixed at 3.25 per cent per annum, and from the fifth year to the end of contract, the rate will be minimum retail rate minus 1 percentage point (MRR-1), or 5.75 per cent.
Based on the fixed rate of 3.25 per cent per annum, the borrowers will pay instalments of Bt4,800 per month on a mortgage of Bt1 million. In the fifth year, the monthly |instalment will go up to Bt6,100, he said.
In banking system, the fixed rate for the first four years is 4.7 per cent.
Under the programme, GH Bank offers 100-per-cent financing to government officers who require a loan to buy a home in a development project, to build a home, to remodel or renovate an existing house, to refinance a housing loan from another bank, or for buying non-performing assets at GH Bank.
GH Bank earlier launched a housing-loan programme for government officers who were members of the Government Pension Fund, but the interest rate was higher than in this new programme. Yet, Chatchai noted that the number of the GPF’s borrowers have declined much because the programme has offered for 12 years, which new loan from GPF borrowers at present is Bt1 billion per year from Bt30 billion in the first year of housing loan to GPF members.
Lending to government officers accounts for 20 per cent of GH Bank’s total loan portfolio of Bt880 billion, and it expects the proportion this year to go up to 21 per cent thanks to new housing loans, Chatchai said.