Friday 23 March 2018

Mortgage arrears: Number of homeowners more than two years behind falls for first time

Professor Patrick Honohan
Professor Patrick Honohan

Charlie Weston, Personal Finance Editor

THE number of homeowners more than two years behind on their repayments has fallen for the first time.

New figures out this morning show that the number of homeowners in long-term mortgage arrears dropped by 720.

It is the first time that the numbers that are more than two years behind on their repayments fell since the Central Bank started recording arrears at the end of 2012.

There were 37,269 residential mortgage holders in mortgage arrears for more than two years at the end of September.

The development has prompted hopes that the mortgage arrears crisis may finally coming to an end.

It comes just weeks after former Central Bank governor Patrick Honohan said the inability to deal with the mortgage arrears problem more quickly was biggest regret.

Mr Honohan, who has now retired, said he was disappointed that he wasn’t able to improve the situation more swiftly.

The latest figures show there has been a fall in the numbers in arrears for a variety of different lengths of time.

A total of just over 92,000 homeowners are in some form of arrears. This represents around one in eight of all residential mortgages.

This represents a fall of almost 6,000 arrears cases in the three months to September when compared with earlier in the year.





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