Mortgage arrears slightly down

The number of mortgage arrears has decreased slightly.

The arrears crisis is a legacy of the Great Financial Collapse more than a decade ago.

The total number of residential mortgage accounts in arrears on their payments decreased by 342 in the three months ended September.

This is down 1,934 from a year earlier, according to mortgage arrears figures released by the central bank.

Around 30,809 mortgage accounts are three months or more in arrears.

In a press release, the central bank said the total number of arrears of more than 90 days fell by 4.3 percent.

“This continues the gradual downward trend observed in recent years and is the lowest number of accounts in arrears over 90 days since March 2010,” the bank said.

Just over 6,000 of the arrears cases are part of a court proceeding, just over a third (in the jurisdiction for over five years.

Nearly one in five mortgages owned by Vulture Funds and serviced by companies like Pepper and Start are in default.

These companies hold 74 percent of all delinquent residential mortgages.

Half of the mortgage accounts in arrears across the system have been in arrears for five years or more.

Central bank statisticians said the number of such cases of long-term arrears fell by 998 accounts in the third quarter.

Thousands of mortgage accounts remain in arrears despite record rents.

Rents have doubled in the last decade, with the average rent across the country now approaching €1,500 and over €2,000 in Dublin.

About 11,027 of the 80,200 mortgage loans were in arrears at the end of September.

That’s down 343 accounts, or 3 percent, during the quarter, the central bank said.

Around a fifth of the arrears on rent accounts were between two and five years overdue.

A quarter are between 5 and 10 years behind, and 18 percent were more than 10 years behind.

A total of 61,278 residential mortgage accounts were classified as rehabilitated at the end of September 2022.

The total number of restructuring agreements decreased by 2,144 accounts during the quarter, continuing a long-term downward trend.

There are fears a massive spike in arrears is imminent due to huge rate hikes on mortgages owed by vulture funds.

The funds and the companies servicing the loans have gone through every rise of the European Central Bank.

These mortgages are mostly adjustable rate as they are reluctant to offer them fixed rates.

Mortgage holders served by companies like Pepper and Start often can’t switch because they are or were in arrears.

Others have a split mortgage, where part of the loan is put to one side, with payments for that tranche coming later. Lenders will not accept them if they try to switch.

The rates they were sitting at were high before the ECB started raising lending rates and are now up to 6.5-7 percent, with more hikes on the way after yesterday’s ECB rate hike. Mortgage arrears slightly down

Fry Electronics Team

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