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Why it has become harder to get a loan or mortgage in Norway 

Frazer Norwell
Frazer Norwell - [email protected]
Why it has become harder to get a loan or mortgage in Norway 
A mix of rising interest rates and regulations mean that accessing loans and mortgages in Norway has become more difficult. Pictured is a row of houses in Stavanger in Norway. Photo by Alicja Gancarz on Unsplash

Regulations mean that loan and mortgage applicants in Norway must tolerate interest rates of more than eight percent if they are to be offered lending by financial institutions. 


After 13 key policy rate hikes since 2021, interest rates on loans and mortgages are currently hovering around five percent. Depending on the offer from the bank and an applicant's own finances, rates may be as high as 6, 7 or 8 percent. 

The higher interest rates mean it has become harder to secure a loan or mortgage from banks in the country. The reason for this has to do with Norwegian lending regulations. This to ensure they can still afford repayments if rates increase. 

When taking out loans and mortgages, institutions must test consumers' finances against three percentage points higher than the rate offered. 

This means if you were to apply for a mortgage with an interest rate of 5.5 percent, the bank would be required to see if you were able to cope with interest rate repayments of up to 8.5 percent. 

"It is more difficult to get a loan now because the interest rate is much higher. When we have to calculate how much we can give in loans, we have to use our calculation models in a different way," Ingjerd Spiten, executive director at the Norwegian bank DNB, told public broadcaster NRK. 


Endre Jo Reite, director at BN Bank, said that the amount households in Norway can borrow as a result of the interest rate increases and regulations has been slashed drastically. 

"The loan opportunity for an entire family has fallen by around 300,000 kroner for a family with a total income of 1 million kroner, and it is quite dramatic when it comes to what opportunity they have to find a suitable home," Reite said. 

READ ALSO: How to get a better deal on interest rates from your Norwegian bank

The Norwegian Consumer Council has a digital loan calculator that gives consumers an overview of the interest rates banks will charge on its Finansportalen website. 

At the turn of the year, the Norwegian government loosened regulations to make accessing loans and mortgages easier when interest rates rise. Before the new regulations were introduced, applicants had their finances stress tested against rate increases of five percentage points. 


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