Tuesday 17 September 2019

Mortgage firm sorry for 'missed payments' error

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Charlie Weston

Charlie Weston

Thousands of mortgage holders have received apologies after errors were made indicating that they had missed payments.

Mortgage servicing firm Pepper had reported to the Central Bank incorrect details on the payment activity of 1,800 mortgage holders.

The people concerned had originally taken out loans with Bank of Scotland (Ireland), which has since left this market.

The bungle meant the number of missed payments was incorrectly reported for the Central Bank's new Central Credit Register.

In most cases the error saw it reported that these people had missed three payments when they may have missed two.

Such errors could affect the ability of a person to take out a loan, as lenders typically check the register when considering a loan application.

However, most of those affected are in arrears.

A spokesman for Pepper said: "Pepper has apologised to the customers in question."

He added that the issue affected less than 3pc of the 65,000 residential accounts managed by Pepper. No compensation has been paid so far.

"It is strictly limited to circa 1,800 accounts from the former BOS [Bank of Scotland] portfolio and relates to a processing error," the spokesman said. "The error resulted in the number of missed payments being incorrectly reported, in the majority of cases by a single payment."

Pepper said that it had now corrected the error for most of the affected customers.

However, a small number have yet to receive a letter telling them about the issue.

"Pepper has contacted these customers about this historic process error, which has been resolved on Pepper's reporting system to ensure CCR (Central Credit Register) records accurately reflect the most up-to-date position and account history for these customers," said the spokesman.

This latest error by a mortgage company comes after ICS Mortgages customers feared their ability to get new credit would be affected after submitting information on their existing mortgages to the credit register.

ICS Mortgages, a subsidiary of non-bank lender Dilosk, wrote to 1,067 buy-to-let and mortgage holders to tell them that it passed on incorrect information on their loans to the register earlier this month.

ICS said in the letter that it incorrectly informed the register that the mortgages were in arrears when they were not.

In March, it also emerged that thousands of Bank of Ireland mortgage customers were facing higher payments after the lender messed up their loan calculations.

The Bank of Ireland calculation error has been going on for five years and affects 3,400 customers.

The bank miscalculated the monthly capital repayment amounts due, taking too little each month. It also charged interest based on what it should have been taking in capital repayments each month, which resulted in too much interest being charged.

Irish Independent

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