US online consumers are following a national trend toward buying homes rather than remortgaging, according to mortgage statistics released by Bank of America.
According to the statistics, a year ago just 6% of mortgage applications from online customers were for buying homes, compared to 94% for refinancing. In Q3 2003 this figure jumped to 44% for buying, compared to 56% for re-mortgaging.
Emmanuel Obiorah, e-commerce executive for consumer real estate, Bank of America, says: "More consumers are thinking about buying a home rather than refinancing, and millions are turning to the Internet to find the options that suit them best."
Bank of America says customers who go online to investigate mortgages are finding new capabilities to help them make decisions faster. The bank's online mortgage service provides customers with a decision within five minutes of submitting an application.
Users can also use the site to track the status of a mortgage and sign up for e-mail alerts. The bank also provides instant online help with filling out applications.