BCR “Banca pentru Locuinţe” (BCR BpL), the savings-credits market leader on the housing market, saw a 27% increment in deposits over 2014, topping RON 2.5 bil.
The portfolio of BCR “Banca pentru Locuinţe” [the Housing Bank] includes over 362,000 contracts whose clients have saved over RON 2.5 billion. The contracts signed during 2014 totalled RON 3.3 billion, i.e. 37% more than the value of contracts signed during 2013 (RON 2.4 billion).
“BCR Banca pentru Locuinţe continued climbing on the improvement curve well into 2014, too, strengthening its leading position in the Romanian savings-credits banks industry. Although the economic context remains difficult, the clients of BCR Banca pentru Locuinţe continued to save and invest money in improving their homes. Thus, in 2014, the bank’s received deposits picked up by 27% compared to 2013, and the bank’s portfolio exceeded 362,000 savings-credits contracts”, stated Carmen Schuster, Vice-president of BCR “Banca pentru Locuinţe”.
The portfolio of credits granted by BCR “Banca pentru Locuinţe” S.A. increased by 33%, surpassing the value of RON 152 mil. at the end of 2014, compared to RON 114 mil. at the end of 2013.
BCR “Banca pentru Locuinţe” offers only credit products in RON, with a fixed interest rate of 4.44% per year for Intermediate and Anticipated credits, and 5% per year for Bauspar credits, covering the whole crediting stage. Thus, BCR “Banca pentru Locuinţe” products are not affected by exchange rate risks and increase in interest risks.
Clients continue to be attracted to the stability of the savings-credits system, where product features are fixed and known from the moment when the contract is signed. Thus, from the very beginning, our client is aware of the fixed interest offered by the bank during the saving stage (2% per year) and the fixed interest covering the whole crediting stage.
Moreover, BCR “Banca pentru Locuinţe” does not charge any credit application evaluation fee or any fee for evaluating the real estate which borrowers intend to pledge as collateral. There is also a RON 0 fee for early repayment, and the life insurance is free.
“The total portfolio of credits granted by BCR “Banca pentru Locuinţe” experienced a significant increase during the last year, of 33% from approx. RON 114 mil. at the end of 2013 to over RON 152 mil. at the end of 2014. The crediting activity is only at the beginning as the contract portfolio of BCR “Banca pentru Locuinţe” is still young, thus we believe that this growing trend will also continue during the next period, when many savings-credits files will be allocated and clients will be able to access Bauspar credits, with a fixed interest rate of 5% per year covering the whole crediting stage,” stated Carmen Schuster, Vice-president of BCR “Banca pentru Locuinţe”.
Beginning with 2014, BCR “Banca pentru Locuinţe”, together with Monumentum Association and Global Heritage Fund, began developing a special project for accessible financing for the restoration and rehabilitation of traditional houses. The financial solution of BCR “Banca pentru Locuinţe” for the owners of such houses is a special credit in RON, with a 5% fixed interest rate per year, covering the whole crediting stage.
“We are aware of the importance of the traditional architecture for the image of the Romanian cities. These buildings grant a special image to the urban and rural environment, they carry a part of the local history and the cultural memoirs of that particular community. We wish to financially support the restoration of this heritage, which gives beauty to our cities. Together with Monumentum Association and Global Heritage Fund, we welcome owners who live in a traditional house and wish to keep its specifics. We offer credits at a small, fixed interest rate of 5% per year, covering the whole crediting stage. This is an attempt to encourage owners who undertake to restore their traditional houses,” stated Carmen Schuster, Vice-president of BCR “Banca pentru Locuinţe”.
For instance, for a restoration project worth RON 9,000, the client pays RON 60-70 monthly for 14 years. Moreover, if the client save sin advance, he can benefit from all the advantages of the savings-credits contract – the interest rate and the State payment are 25% of the saved amount (no more than the RON value of EUR 250/year).
Other benefits of savings-credits contracts for the housing market, through BCR “Banca pentru Locuinţe”, are: guaranteed State payment granted during the saving stage, which, over the recommended saving stage (5 years), generate sums of money which the clients cannot obtain from any other financial product on the market; fixed interest rated offered for the whole crediting stage; and, last but not least, the safety of the deposits– guaranteed by the Bank Deposit Guarantee Fund. Besides this, the system encourages one to save money, supports the relaunch of credits, as well as the improvement of the housing stock.
Regarding the destinations of the housing stock credits granted by BCR “Banca pentru Locuinţe”, most of the credits accessed by clients are for modernisations, restorations, rehabilitations or redecorations of existing houses, followed by credits for buying or building a new home. The situation recorded by the portfolio of credits of BCR “Banca pentru Locuinţe” also reflects the tendencies shown by the latest market research conducted by the bank, meaning the results regarding the Romanian’s intentions to invest in improving their home.
Thus, 56% of Romanians intend to invest during the next 5 years and 29%, during the next 12 months. Specific plans regarding housing investments for the following year are related to restoring one’s home (13%), fixing sanitary and electrical facilities (9%), thermal insulation (8%), structural repairs (7%), installing a heating system (5%) or works regarding the roof/terrace (5%).
Other specific plans include: buying land (6%), investing in the house at the country side (5%), buying a new home (4%) and building a new home (3%).
BCR “Banca pentru Locuinţe” (BCR BpL), a subsidiary of BCR GROUP specialized in savings and housing credits based on the saving-lending system, was launched in July 2008. The main shareholders are Banca Comercială Română (BCR), Romania – majority shareholder owning 80% of the shares – and S Bausparkasse der oesterreichischen Sparkassen, an ERSTE Group bank specialising in savings-credits, from Austria – 20% of the shares.
BCR – External Communication
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