Banks gave approval for more than 1,800 mortgages last month, according to figures from the Irish Banking Federation, 11.9% higher than in the same month of 2012.

Last month saw the second highest number of mortgage approvals since the IBF began tracking the figure in 2011, with November 2012 still remaining the biggest month on record.

The vast majority of approvals in July continued to be for house purchases, with just 7.5% being for other types of property.

The value of the approvals in July was €325 million, a 9.3% increase on those made in the same month of last year.

Meanwhile the number of approvals for re-mortgages or mortgage top-ups continued to decline, with 16.6% fewer issued last month compared to July 2012.