property versus deposits

First time buyers who don’t buy new homes

First time buyers have been asking ‘what about those of us who are not buying a new home? Why don’t we get any help like the people using help to buy?’. The answer is that you do, at least for the remainder of 2017.

There is still a DIRT relief for first time buyers scheme in action, it started in 2014 and is ongoing until the 31st of December.

The scheme doesn’t help you get a deposit, rather it’s a refund after you buy, see the notes below taken from the Revenue.ie website:

Section 266A of the Taxes Consolidation Act 1997 provides for refunds of Deposit Interest Retention Tax (DIRT) for first-time buyers who purchase a house or apartment to live in as their home. It also applies to first time buyers who self-build a home to live in.

Who can claim it?

A first-time buyer of a house or apartment who purchases or self-builds a property between 14 October 2014 and 31 December 2017 may be entitled to claim a refund of DIRT.

The first-time buyer must not have …

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2017 rent too damn high

Making sense of ‘help to buy’

Yesterday Revenue announced the details of the new ‘help to buy’ scheme. It is designed to make buying a home more realistic for first time buyers and to increase the supply of new homes. Whether it’s a good or bad idea is beside the point, what most people want to know is how it works so here’s the breakdown.

It’s a scheme to allow first time buyers buying a new home to get a rebate of up to 5% of the purchase price or contract price (whichever is the lower) from income tax and DIRT tax paid in the past four tax years to a maximum of €20,000. The property must cost less than €500,000 or 600k for retrospective applications, the size of the loan versus the value of the property must also be 70% or more.

So, for every €100,000 of value you must be borrowing at least €70,000 the idea being that very cash rich buyers don’t need this help. It started on the 19th of July 2016 and goes until the 31 Dec 2019.

Now that it’s …

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2016-12 PCP fianance, personal contract plan

Understanding Personal Contract Plan or ‘PCP’

A lot of people come to us for general financial advice and something we are asked about more regularly are PCP contracts. This is where you make a down-payment on a car and then make monthly payments.

The basic workings are that you are paying for the depreciation and not ‘the car’ as some people think. You give an estimate of your annual mileage and in return you get a ‘MGFV’ or ‘minimum guaranteed future value’. If you go over the miles it negatively impacts the value.

This is then the price you have to pay to own the car. You aren’t covered by the Consumer Credit Agreement legislation because you are not ‘buying’ anything when you do this.

What is interesting is that people don’t usually think about how this works in the future, when the time comes you’ll notice that you usually can’t sell the car for the ‘value’ you are told it has and if you did buy it and go to sell it to a garage or a private seller you won’t normally get anywhere near …

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TodayFM: The last Word features Irish Mortgage Brokers

Matt Cooper had Irish Mortgage Brokers on ‘The Last Word’ to discuss some changes announced by Simon Coveney regarding rent controls in Dublin and Cork.

The piece focused on some of the issues at hand with a commentator from the Dublin Tenants Association also taking part.

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ECB - european central bank

Central Bank mortgage arrears published for Q3 of 2016

The Central Bank published the quarterly mortgage arrears figures today, here are the key findings (taken from their press release).

The number of mortgage accounts for principal dwelling houses (PDH) in arrears fell further in the third quarter of 2016; this marks the thirteenth consecutive quarter of decline. A total of 79,562 (11 per cent) of accounts were in arrears at end-Q3, a decline of 3.1 per cent relative to Q2 2016.

The number of accounts in arrears over 90 days at end-September was 56,350 (8 per cent of total), reflecting a quarter-on-quarter decline of 2.1 per cent. This represents the twelfth consecutive decline in the number of PDH accounts in arrears over 90 days.

The majority of maturity categories of arrears, including the over 720 days’ category, declined in Q3 2016. This category recorded a fifth consecutive decline, having declined for the first time in Q3 2015.

The number of PDH mortgage accounts that were classified as restructured at end-September was 121,140. Of these restructured accounts, 88 per cent were deemed to be meeting the terms of their current …

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vulture funds

Vultures are a key part of our housing recovery

When we hear talk of ‘vultures’ and ‘vulture funds’ it’s usually in highly negative overtones. That’s why the name-calling exists in the first place, the idea is to imply you have these groups that feed off the dead bodies of an innocent party.

Put this aside and realize that even if a company does feed off the assets of a failed one, that it doesn’t mean the firm that failed was somehow an innocent bystander. Usually they lost their market share and assets as a result of their own decisions and by definition a liquidator would sell these on to somebody.

Whether that ‘somebody’ is a person, fund or regular company hardly matters. What does matter is that we have a housing crisis and that these same ‘vultures’ will likely be delivering about 75% or more of private new housing in Dublin where the problems are most pronounced.

Take a look at some of the numbers in new developments: * Lone Star own 600 acres of land in Dublin with the potential for 7,000 homes: in Adamstown, where it has …

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Pat Kenny Show on Newstalk 106, featuring Irish Mortgage Brokers

Pat Kenny had Lorcan Sirr from DIT and Karl Deeter from our company on to talk about the property market in particular in light of the changes announced by the Central Bank.

The conversation covered many topics in the market and outlined where so many issues in housing are arising.

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2016-11 trump wall

The Irish ‘Trump walls’ we don’t discuss

Commentators in Ireland love looking down on Americans, even more so since Donald Trump beat establishment insider Hillary Clinton.

They seem unable to stop labelling and name calling ‘the deplorables’, while forgetting that acceptance and tolerance used to be their moral high ground. As an American in Ireland, this makes me think about the po-faced hypocrisy of it all.

“He said build a wall,” I hear people cry, as if that alone is the acid test of an entire nation’s future. It’s true, he said some mean things; he didn’t use the language we like and accept. So here are a few home truths about our own great Irish walls – the ones that are far more acceptable than Trump’s because they aren’t referred to directly.

Many of them are invisible, which makes them seem okay, but in reality the outcome is the same. They just don’t sound so Six-Hirb’ish (that’s sexist, ignorant, xenophobic, homophobic, Islamophobic, racist and bigoted).

We don’t have Mexicans in Ireland, but we do have other minorities such as Travellers, who we build walls to stop. …

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