Bank of Ireland’s Marketing Gimmick

Recently, the Bank of Ireland has been accused of a marketing gimmick. The Bank of Ireland has launched a new mortgage product that does not offer cash back. The bank has maintained a high market share. Bank of Ireland has been offering up to 3% in cash back of the value of the mortgage taken out. However, the Bank does not have the lowest rates in the market.

Cash back can be defined as money back from a mortgage. For example, if an individual borrows €200,000 he or she may get back €6,000. The first 2% of cash back is paid at the time the mortgage is taken out. The other 1% is paid at the end of year five.

However, the bank has now introduced a High Value Mortgage Interest Rate with no cash back. The new mortgage product is the first fixed rate product without cash back that the Bank of Ireland has one since the introduction of cash back in 2014.

The High Value Mortgage Interest Rate only applies to people borrowing more than €400,000. The product is also …

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Institutional Investors not to Blame

Institutional investors have commonly been credited with causing the rise in property prices. However, stockbroker Davy, claims otherwise and says they are not to blame. The report by Davy credits the inflation in house prices to be caused by the Bank of Ireland’s strict mortgage-lending rules. The pressure on the housing market has caused many people to become interested in the rental market causing pressure there too and a 7% rise in rentals.

Institutional investment has been rising exponentially in Ireland. It has grown in sales to a total of 1.1 billion Euros in 2018 up 200 million Euros from the previous year. These figures may seem high, but only account for 30% of total property investments in 2018 and do not have a big enough impact on the market to make a tremendous impact. Additionally, most of those investment occurred in Dublin where the top 25 transactions account for 2,370 units worth 954 million Euros in 2018.

Davy analyst Conall Mac Coille commented, “People have, however, confused the chicken with the egg,” and “Institutional investors have been attracted here …

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First time buyer steps explained

Being able to take out a mortgage has become a major hassle for all types of home buyers, but especially first time buyers. Recently, a 2018 study by the Central Bank reported that the best position to be in so that your request for a loan can be approved by one of the 7 largest lending banks is in a couple with a substantial down payment already available.

This is most likely the case because a couple can bring in two salaries, making a steady stream of income more reliable even if one person were to lose their job. Additionally, having a large down payment reduces risk for the lender. If you were to foreclose on a property, meaning you couldn’t afford to pay your mortgage anymore, there would be significantly less consequences on the lender side.

Although this is an ideal situation for approval, it is not the only solution. Plenty of first time buyers are individuals without extremely high credit scores and salaries, but there are a few key parts that must be fulfilled in order …

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Child saving options

When it comes to opening a savings account, earlier is always better. Especially in Ireland, it can be extremely beneficial to start accounts for children at a young age. Personally, I believe that opening a savings account was a very influential step in the shaping of my financial views.

My first savings account was opened after my first communion, and I’m sure that many other irishmen have had this same experience. For me, this was a huge deal. The money I had gotten from such a special time in my life was now being used to finance my future.

As a child, it is easy to get lost in the concept of money, when you have cash or coins in your hand, it is far more valuable than any amount on a written check. Because of this child-like wonder, the actuality of the value of money is highly skewed.

By teaching your children early the power of independent saving and investing, they will be given the tools that enable them to continue down a more financially stable path …

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Bank of Ireland restructures their equity

Over the weekend, Bank of Ireland went through some major changes to their structure.

This is needed to avoid a future bail out. Fitch, one of the world’s top three credit ratings firm, said the Irish banking system had around 15 percent of non-performing loans. This is about three times the average amount of the European Union countries.

Despite this, Fitch still gave Ireland a rating of A because of the potential economic growth. They gave Ireland this rating on Friday because the economy is supposed to grow 3.5 percent this year which makes Ireland one of the top growers from the EU area for the third consecutive year.

Even with this high rating, Fitch warns Irish banks that this massive amount of problem loans is weighing the country’s rating down.

Bank of Ireland responds by restructuring their equity to protect Ireland if a crisis occurs. This new system protects the Irish bank accounts and minimizes taxpayer bailout.

How it works?

Bank of Ireland will issue two types of equity: senior and junior. This puts the liability of crisis to …

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Cash back deals: are banks manipulating borrowers?

The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) warned lenders last month about their use of cashback deals and loyalty discounts. The commission believes that such incentives may be detrimental to consumers and may reflect unhealthy competition in the mortgage market.

 

Cash back deals have become more and more common in the market in recent years. These deals work by giving borrowers a certain percentage of their total mortgage amount back at the start of their loan, and they mostly target first time buyers who may need the extra money on hand to furnish their homes or to tide them through a tough transitional time in life.

 

A quick look around the market reveals that major lenders, such as AIB, Ulster Bank, Bank of Ireland, EBS and KBC, all have similar cash back deals, mostly ranging from 2-3% or €1500-€2000. The catch on these loans however, is that interest rates on them are often higher than the average on traditional loans. This means that over the term of the loan, extra interest paid  may turn out to be much …

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Mortgage market update: lenders have large margins

Dan White authored a piece published in the Irish Independent on June 18 titled: Are greedy mortgage lenders about to see enormous margins squeezed? The article analyses the current mortgage market and concludes that limited competition between lenders is a source of high interest rates in the market and the consequently high margins and profits achieved by lenders. White takes note of current changes in bank’s interest rates and of a paper published by the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission to predict the future of interest rates and margins in the mortgage market.

 

The author cites a paper published by The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission stating that the Irish mortgage market is “characterised by a high concentration of a small number of lenders, limited competition between these lenders and low levels of entry by new players”. This is in part due to the fact that many foreign lenders left the Irish market after the crash. Because of the limited competition, Irish banks had free range to dramatically increase their net …

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Bank of Ireland cuts mortgage rates

Bank of Ireland recently announced new and reduced mortgage rates, which will be available starting Friday the 16th. The highlight is cuts of fixed mortgages rates up to 0.35% for both existing customers and for first-time buyers. The bank decision ups its competition in Ireland’s reviving property market and marks Bank of Ireland as the fourth lender that has cut its rates within the last two months. KBC Bank cut its fixed rate in April, and currently has one of the lowest rates on the market. Permanent TSB and Ulster Bank are the other two lenders who have also taken similar measures.

 

Bank of Ireland’s fixed rate mortgages are based on a property’s loan to value ratio. It has cut its rates for first time buyers with an Loan to Value ratio of 81-90% by 0.25%. Customers with greater down payments and lower Loan to Values ratios also see their mortgage rates cut between 0.1%-0.25%. The greatest reductions however have been for Bank of Ireland’s existing customers, who see their mortgage rates fall by 0.35% if they have a …

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Moody’s bumps up ratings on Irish banks

Credit rating agency Moody’s has upgraded the long term debt and deposit ratings of Irish Banks: Bank of Ireland (BOI) and Allied Irish Banks (AIB). It also upgraded each bank’s baseline credit assessment by one level. Irakli Pipia, Vice President-Senior Credit Officer at AIB said “the rating upgrades reflect a range of positive factors, including further reduction in non-preforming loans, improved capital ratios and achievement of stable core profitability”.

 

From the end of 2015 to the end of 2016, BOI’s problem loan ratio fell from 11% to 7.9% and the  loan to deposit ratio fell from 112% to 108%, signalling improvements in asset quality and a better funding ratio. The bank’s BAC was upgraded from ba1 to baa3, the 10th tier of Moody’s rating scale.

 

Moody’s also bumped its baselines credit assessment of AIB by one tier from ba1 to ba2. It cites a reduction in the percentage of the bank’s problem loans from 18.6% last year to 14% at the end of 2016 and the bank’s more liquid position.

 

Various other ratings were also affected in …

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Two identical first time buyers walk into a bar, one qualifies, the other doesn’t

The Central Bank rules on curtailing mortgage lending have had an interesting effect, first is that we are seeing more loans draw down that might not have because people are bringing forward consumption due to the fact they won’t qualify for the same amount again in the future. This is literally the opposite of the intended effect.

Second is that it’s causing chaos for prospective buyers who may hold an exemption or need an exemption because there are quarterly reporting rules that mean banks can’t offer a new loan until they know if an old one will be drawn or become an NTU (not taken up).

Perhaps the easiest thing to do is explain it, currently you can’t get an exemption from Ulsterbank or AIB/EBS/Haven or BOI, but you can from PTsb and KBC. The banks that can’t give you one (and remember it’s only one of LTV or LTI not both) are hogtied because they have given the limit of exemptions (c. 15%-20% of lending) already in loan offers and they have to estimate both the annual and quarterly …

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