The effect of mortgage interest rates on the growth of mortgage financing amongst financial institutions in Kenya
Mortgage financing plays an important role in the development of an economy and ultimately poverty alleviation when individuals get to be home owners instead of tenants. The Kenyan mortgage market has been experiencing slow growth over the last few years despite the upsurge of housing prices. Compared to European countries, the Kenyan mortgage market is quite underdeveloped albeit with great potential for growth. Interest rates have been identified as one of the factors influencing mortgage financing. The objective of this study was to establish the effect of mortgage interest rates on the growth of mortgage financing amongst financial institutions in Kenya for the financial period 2012-2014. The target population was the 44 licensed commercial banks and housing finance company. Data was collected from secondary sources and a descriptive research design was employed. Regression analysis was used to carry out inferential analysis. The regression analysis conducted at level of significance 0.05 revealed a very weak positive relationship between mortgage interest rates and growth of mortgage financing. The analytical model used in the study accounted for only 11 percent of growth of mortgage financing. The study recommends that other variables that capture relevant and significant factors that will adequately predict growth of mortgage financing be included in the model and financial institutions should also consider designing affordable mortgage products for the middle income earners to ensure growth in mortgage financing because they form a large part of the population and have great untapped potential. Future studies on the Kenyan mortgage market should use primary data in addition to secondary data so as to capture other key factors affecting growth of mortgage financing such as access to long term funds and levels of income.