Irish banks hold 120,754 mortgages in arrears

Department says term extensions most regular solution to issues

A ’for sale’ sign is seen outside a housing estate in Keshcarrigan in County Leitrim. The Department of Finance said today that Irish banks have negotiated with consumers to restructure 71,086 mortgages of which more than half, 41,236, have been permanently restructured. Photograph: Bloomberg

A ’for sale’ sign is seen outside a housing estate in Keshcarrigan in County Leitrim. The Department of Finance said today that Irish banks have negotiated with consumers to restructure 71,086 mortgages of which more than half, 41,236, have been permanently restructured. Photograph: Bloomberg

Thu, Oct 31, 2013, 18:50

An extension to the mortgage term is the most popular permanent solution offered by Irish banks to those seeking to restructure their loans, new figures from the Department of Finance show.

The figures made available at briefing today show that of the 1.9 million principle private dwellings in Ireland, 699,764 of these are currently under mortgage to the six main banks.

While the vast majority, 83 per cent, or 579,010 of these mortgages were performing and not in arrears, 17 per cent or 120,754 were in arrears of more than one day.

Irish banks have negotiated with consumers to restructure 71,086 mortgages of which more than half, 41,236, have been permanently restructured, the figures show.

The figures are part of a new monthly report to be published by the Department of Finance, highlighting restructuring arrangements offered by AIB, Bank of Ireland, Permanent TSB, ACC, KBC Ireland and Ulster Bank.

Of mortgages in arrears of more than 90 days, 24.7 per cent (20,414) had been restructured while 75.3 per cent or 62,210 had not.

Of those mortgages permanently restructured by the six banks, term extension was the most popular solution offered benefiting 14,230 consumers. Interest only for a period was offered to 9,046 mortgage holders while split mortgages were given to just 2,521 consumers.

The most common temporary mortgage solution offered by banks was interest only for a period at 13,172 mortgages.

The Department of Finance said the figures were “an indication that the banks are beginning to get their arms round the problem”.

A spokesman said he hoped the figures would encourage those in arrears to engage with their bank. “These figures should give borrowers a sense that there are solutions available.”

The monthly figures should “show a switch from temporary to more permanent solutions overtime”, he said.

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