JIS News

The Jamaica Mortgage Bank (JMB) is sourcing additional funding to ensure the continuity of its Secondary Mortgage Market (SMM) programme, due to the high demand for the facility.

According to Minister without portfolio in the Ministry of Transport, Works and Housing, Dr. Hon. Morais Guy, the JMB has been advised that there is a demand for some $1.5 billion in secondary mortgages.

The SMM provides liquidity to mortgage lending institutions to allow them to create additional mortgages.

The Minister, who was addressing a recently Jamaica Chamber of Commerce (JCC) luncheon at the St. Mary Civic Centre, noted that since the reactivation of the SMM facility some two years ago, there has been significant interest in the mortgage market. He noted that primary mortgages have become very competitive, with rates lowering from as high as 16.95 per cent to 9.4 per cent.

He pointed out that there were other impacts, such as reviewing of fees for possible reduction by major players in the market, as well as interest by others in becoming intermediaries for on-lending.

Dr. Guy highlighted the benefits to borrowers under the SMM, including: greater access to mortgage financing; increased supply of mortgage funds; reduced mortgage rates resulting in lower installments; access to longer term loans with attendant lowering of monthly payments; and higher loan value ratios.

“We (the Government) are determined to drive the development of the secondary mortgage market as a source of capital funding,” he stated.

When the JMB reactivated the SMM facility in 2011, the aim was to provide up to 4,000 more Jamaican families per year, the opportunity to own their dream home.

Contact: Alphea Saunders