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Mortgage mum -- I welcome moves to help the trapped

NEW mum Marissa Carter is one of thousands who feels trapped by negative equity in a one-bed apartment.

She welcomes proposals to target the mortgage crisis but still remains despondent about the future.

Marissa (27) and her husband welcomed their first child -- baby Charlie -- two weeks ago.

The couple are still living in their one-bedroom apartment in a plush estate which they bought at the cusp of the boom.

They paid €320,000 for the Carrickmines property in 2009 but now believe there are in serious negative equity.

"We imagine we would be able to sell our apartment for around €100,000. We would still have a huge €200,000 to take with us," she said.

"We would really like to buy a house to bring up our family.

"But if we were to see a house for €500,000 -- our new mortgage would be €700,000."

Marissa, who currently has a tracker mortgage, said that even if their bank followed Ulster Bank's example they wouldn't be tempted.

The bank is offering homeowners the ability to bring their tracker rate with them for the remaining balance on their first home.

But the balance of the mortgage which would be at an existing variable rate of 3.9pc and this would be unsustainable, the businesswoman said.

"I don't think it is going to benefit that many people."

"Unless you had €200,000 cash where you could offset the cost of the new house and you could bring to the table, then it is not going to be attractive.

"It wouldn't make any sense for us whatsoever."

The negative equity lifeline touted by AIB, Ulster Bank, EBS and KBC Bank to tempt those whose property is worth less than they bought it would not appeal to the couple either.

Homeowners may be given the opportunity to obtain fresh loans to buy new homes.

Marissa, whose husband is a banker, said that the couple hope to stay put for the time being and hope that the property market will rebound somewhat.

"That or just try and save so that we would be able to put down a sizeable chunk of money so that we weren't paying a ridiculously high mortgage," she added. The owner of Carter Beauty in Blackrock said that the idea of the new products and options could have some effect on kick-starting the market.

"Ulster Bank are probably trying to move ahead of PTSB and Bank of Ireland and be ahead of the pack," she said. "It is something that encourages people to come to them for loans and even consider purchasing. But even if our bank did come out and do something like that, we wouldn't move."