The RBA left interest rates on hold this week at 1.5 per cent. Image: AAP/Dean Lewins. Home loan approval numbers fell in September, according to the ABS. Image: AAP/Dan Himbrechts.Economists had expected them to rise about 2 per cent.The value of home loans written during September also fell.Throughout the month, $32.5 billion in home loans were written — down 3.6 per cent on the month prior. The value of loans for investment housing slid a whopping 6.2 per cent — the largest monthly decline since September 2015 — reflecting the measures introduced earlier this year to clamp down on investor lending.But the number of first home buyers in the market hit its highest level in 4.5 years, due in part to Victorian and New South Wales government incentives. More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus23 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market23 hours ago ART DECO APARTMENT BLOCK FOR SALE HOW MANY BEDROOMS?! CONSTRUCTION WORK GOING STRONG New figures from the ABS show home loan demand dropped in September.HOME loan approvals have taken an unexpected tumble in another sign the heat is coming out of the housing market, according to new figures.The latest housing finance data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics reveals the number of loan approvals fell a seasonally adjusted 2.3 per cent in September. Mortgage Choice CEO John FlavelL.Mortgage Choice chief executive John Flavell said he wasn’t surprised by the figures and expected a further drop in home loan demand for October.“There has been a lot of policy and pricing changes in the investment mortgage market in recent months and this is, understandably, taking a toll on the market,” he said. GET THE LATEST REAL ESTATE NEWS DIRECT TO YOUR INBOX HERE AMP Capital chief economist Shane Oliver said the data was consistent with further declines in Sydney property prices and a slowdown in the Melbourne housing market.St George Bank senior economist Janu Chan said the data added to the range of indicators such as house prices and auction clearance rates that suggested regulatory measures were having their desired impact.“While this data is volatile month-to-month, it adds to the growing number of signs that housing conditions are cooling,” she said.The Reserve Bank of Australia left interest rates on hold this week at a record low of 1.5 per cent.