Wednesday 13 December 2017

Spike in split mortgages as 11,000 deals in place

Central Bank governor Patrick Honohan
Central Bank governor Patrick Honohan
Charlie Weston

Charlie Weston

Thousands of struggling homeowners have agreed to set part of their mortgage aside in a bid to lower the repayments.

Some 11,000 homeowners now have split mortgage arrangements in place.

This is three times the number of split mortgages in place since last September, the Department of Finance said.

A split mortgage divides a mortgage into two parts. The first part is paid as normal and the second part is put to one side, with most banks allowing nothing to be paid on the part that is "warehoused".

Most banks that offer a split mortgage do not charge interest on the portion of the mortgage that has been put to one side, but Bank of Ireland and ICS do impose interest.

AIB will write off some of the debt for those it offers a split mortgage to if they keep to the deal. Central Bank governor Patrick Honohan, has encouraged banks to offer splits as a way for under-pressure households to deal with their mortgage problems.

The figures also show there has been another fall in the number of homeowners who are in arrears at the main domestic banks. April saw a fall of 6,000 in the number of mortgage holders behind on payments for three months or more, figures from the Department of Finance show.

There are now just over 75,000 residential mortgage accounts that are three months or more in arrears at the six main banks.

Close to 15,000 troubled mortgage holders have a permanent restructuring of their repayments in place, with another 6,000 availing of a temporary restructure.

The figures outline the arrears and the number of permanent repayment deals put in place by AIB, Bank of Ireland, Permanent TSB, ACC, KBC Ireland and Ulster Bank.

The lenders represent 90pc of the market.

Irish Independent

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