The number of homebuyers overstating their financial position when applying for a home loan has decreased thanks to stricter lending standards, UBS’s latest “liar loans” survey has revealed.

UBS banking analyst John Storey says the overall trend showed the number of factual mis-statements had declined somewhat to 37% in 2021, from a record 41% in 2020.

ANZ has bucked the trend, however. The survey shows more people lied on applications for ANZ loans than other banks. “All major banks except ANZ saw a decline in factual mis- statements,” he says.

Around 55% who had taken out a mortgage with ANZ in the second half of 2021 indicated they had lied in their application. “ANZ’s continued deterioration is at odds with the broader improvement in loan factual accuracy,” Storey says.

The survey shows the next highest percentage of customers mis-stating facts on applications was 40% at Westpac, 30% at Commonwealth Bank and just 19% at NAB.

Storey says some pockets of the market would be more susceptible to rising interest rates leading to customer troubles, but banks have several defences: most customers are well ahead on mortgage payments, many have savings buffers and emergency funds to cover 7-12 months’ repayments, and 39% of respondents say their household income is well above spending.