| 18.6°C Dublin

Mortgage holders hit out at letters confirming inclusion in previously announced loan sale

Close

Stock photo: PA

Stock photo: PA

PA

Stock photo: PA

MORTGAGE holders with Ulster Bank whose loans were sold to a US vulture fund last year were annoyed to get letters this week confirming the sale of the loans.

The sale was announced last July, and completed in October.

But some of those affected only got letters this week telling them their loans would now be serviced by Pepper in Shannon.

The timing has been questioned given the disruption caused by the pandemic, while some of those whose loans were sold claim the bank refused to properly engage with them.

The bank insists the letters have been going out for months, and customers were well aware their loans were deep arrears.

The sale includes 2,800 home mortgages and 375 buy-to-let loans.

US vulture fund CarVal is the buyer of a portfolio that the bank has called Project Deenish.

The bank has insisted mortgage holders were given every chance to strike a deal with it to avoid having their loan sold, but some of those whose loans were offloaded dispute this.

One residential mortgage holder questioned the timing of the sale.

He said he had tried to put an arrangement in place to clear his arrears, but claimed the bank did not come back to him on this before the loan was sold.

“I put proposals to the bank. The bank rejected it so I appealed it within the bank. Before I got any word back on the appeal I got a letter telling me my mortgage was sold,” the man, who did not want to be named, said.

David Hall of the Irish Mortgage Holders Organisation also claimed Ulster Bank had failed to properly engage with the debtors before selling the non-performing loan portfolio.

Pepper Finance Corporation (Ireland) DAC is the new legal owner and servicer of the mortgages. The purchase was financed by funds managed by CarVal Investors.

A subsidiary of CaVal called Dennett was set up in Dublin last October and holds the title to the loans, according to company office filing.

The portfolio was sold for €800m.

Asked about the sale, Ulster Bank said it was it was a portfolio of non-performing loans which was announced last year.

A spokeswoman for Ulster Bank declined to put a value on the discounted price of the transaction.

Ulster Bank insisted it actively works “with customers in financial difficulty to find a solution that keeps them in their home while paying a mortgage that is affordable for them in the long run and have been able to do so for four out of five customers”.

It said that it is not possible to work out a deal with every customer as the mortgage may not be sustainable.

Online Editors