Sunday 19 November 2017

Banks forced to restore more trackers

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Charlie Weston Personal Finance Editor

THE number of people who had trackers wrongly taken off them has risen.

The Central Bank said have now identified close to 10,000 cases where homeowners had low-cost trackers wrongly taken off them.

This is up by 1,700 since the last update on the probe was issued in December.

Some 100,000 of two million mortgage accounts have been examined.

Governor Philip Lane has said in the past he expects the final number to be around 15,000 mortgage accounts.

Some 15 lenders have been ordered to examine their mortgage books to see if they incorrectly took trackers off customers during the downturn.

It is estimated that around 100 people lost their homes due to the scandal, but the new update from the Central Bank does not outline how many people ended up losing their homes due to the overcharging.

Only 2,600 mortgage holders have had refunds and compensation paid to them so far, the Central Bank said in an update on the tracker redress scheme.

The amount paid out in interest refunds is just €78m so far. People identified by their lender to have wrongly lost a tracker get put back on the lower rate. The monthly savings from this can be €500.

They are also due refunds of the over-charged interest and a compensation payment, usually 10pc of the refund.

Only nine of the 15 lenders have submitted reports outlining their review of their mortgage books.

Banks have been given until September this year to have these reports identifying all impacted customers sent into the Central Bank.

But it may take longer for refunds to be paid.

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