When Vulture Funds Buy Mortgages

As vulture funds have been seen as taking over the market, the next question is, what do we do next? What happens after a vulture fund takes over your mortgage?

These funds first entered the Irish market at the end of the financial crisis and since, have remained a consistent factor in the mortgage game. Though many years have now passed since they were first introduced, there is still much uncertainty that remains with what exactly these funds are.

Vulture funds essentially entail the many forms of private equity firms and pension funds that exist with the goal of investing across many asset classes such as debt. Debt often acting in the form of mortgage arrears.

The question many are wondering is why? Why are these vulture funds deciding to buy the mortgages that are in arrears?

Due to post-financial crisis events, there was an extremely high number of mortgages that were in arrears as a direct effect, and many that will be in long-term arrears as well.

Because banks are generally not willing to write down any debt of …

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Intriguing Statistics of First-Time Buyers

Perfect Property has recently found success in finding the common budget of the average house hunter in Dublin.

While in such a crisis, this is information that has been found is essentially vital in understanding a piece to the puzzle of what keeps buyers from buying.

Of course, there are statistics on the shortage of homes compared to the increasing demand, a factor into understanding the crisis that is just as vital.

According to Perfect Property, a relatively new search engine, the average Dublin house hunter has a budget of €315,000 to purchase a home with.

A pretty substantial budget for any home buyer, however, we are still observing a vast amount of first-time buyers applying for the new state mortgage scheme, introduced just a few months prior.

A scheme that was expected to cover nearly 1,000 loans and last for an extended period of time is now lucky if it lasts the full year.

Of course, when looking in the Dublin area it can be expected that the budget for a home will …

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Borrowers Looking to Lower Existing Mortgages

Now, more than ever, it’s time that homeowners do whatever they can to lower their mortgages.

With the rise in European interest rates, it is expected that higher mortgages bills will be quick to follow.

Homeowners are beginning to get more and more comfortable as economic recovery since the recession has been tracked as going in such a positive way.

By overpaying on a mortgage the borrower will knock tens of thousands off of their mortgage easily. And they would dramatically cut back on the time it takes to finally become mortgage free.

According to Dowling financial, by an increase of 100 euro per monthly payment, the average mortgage would be paid off three years earlier and save nearly 12,826 euro in interest.

A small increase in payments leads to quite a substantial savings. Probably an effort worth it to most borrowers.

Those that should keep their guard up and remain mindful are those with a fixed rate mortgage.

Overpaying on fixed-rate mortgages could cause borrowers to be hit with an early redemption fee. A charge that could potentially be …

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Mortgage approvals up, lending figures down.

According to the IBF mortgage approvals report the numbers for April are up significantly, the figures stated that mortgage approvals are up 22.8% in a month on month basis and that it is primarily for the purchase of a house. This comes shortly after showing that in the first quarter of the year that mortgage lending is down year on year.

The activity being focused on first home buyers and movers (all looking for non apartment stock in the main) has already been well flagged on this blog.

In year on year terms this April is also up 8.7% on April 2012. A total of 1,433 mortgages to a value of €240m were approved by lenders here during the month of April. The next big question is whether or not they draw down, we have been watching this happen for a while, un-requisitioned loan facilities are common.

Another thing happening is that we are already seeing that the idea of doubling credit this year is unlikely, despite claims from the banks. If 2012 was a wash out then …

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Final Quarter lending of 2012

From various conversations it seems to be that there will be a spike in lending during the final quarter of 2012, it is being credited to TRS availability, and many are saying that has brought forward demand but I don’t know it that holds true or not other than for buyers who would have been active anyway.

The Department of Finance was unimpressed when I suggested in the recent past that some kind of tax break on property would still be required going forward, oddly enough that did actually happen, the new property tax will come with a waiver for first time buyers, although this will never add up to the same benefit as TRS would.

We’ll have to wait until 2013 for the precise IBF/PWC lending figures but suffice to say, if the anecdotal evidence I am hearing from every lender in the market is true, then Q4 may prove to be the biggest lending quarter in 2012. Certainly it would keep the trend that you have a big Q4 followed by a quieter Q1, so keep an eye …

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Mortgage Market Trend Outlook 2011

It’s a new year and we have a new set of predictions for the Irish mortgage market in 2011. In our report (get it here or click on the image) we go through them in detail (bullet points below) and we also review our forecast for 2010 to see just how inaccurate we were on the calls we made for last year.

In our report this year the main areas are:

1.Banks will push up interest rates by another 100bps or 1% (independent of any move by the ECB) costing the average borrower (loan of €200k over 25yrs) an additional €1,280 p.a. Rate hikes may start as early as this month. 2. Variable interest rates will generally start to rest at or north of 5% by 2012. The state controlled banks in particular will be forced to make some painful decisions on interest rates they charge to customers. 3. Fixed rates may be temporarily removed from the market, offered on a limited basis or priced out …

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What is the mortgage market like lately?

People ask me ‘how is business’ a lot, is it macabre fascination or do they want to hear something reassuring? I don’t know, but my general answer is ‘can we talk about something happy?!’. There are so many intermediaries that have shut down that on many levels (I feel I speak for the entire firm on this) we feel privileged to still be operating through the downturn. While we all know that there is a crisis, and we are reminded of it every day, I think it is worth considering the changes that have occurred in the mortgage market in the last year,with an emphasis on 2009.

Mortgage debt is decreasing: Our total ‘indebtedness’ on the mortgage market is coming down, we are deleveraging as a society. This is happening as people start to shun debt and fear the forward commitments of borrowing, in the same way that companies and funds have been deleveraging, everyday people are doing the same. In the past, recessions generally had a large debt element to …

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What next for Europe?

The Euro rose against the dollar as the Fed introduced quantitative easing, this will be furthered by the new TARP programme due to be released later today, Bank of England are also engaging in quantitative easing along with a near zero interest rate policy – one matched by both the USA and Japan.

So what will be the outcome for Europe? Essentially we will be forced to follow suit, rates will have to drop further and we will need to pursue in quantitative easing – via bond/paper purchases or otherwise. Why? Simply put, we cannot stand as an island in the global economy, we can’t stand as a continent when every other major economy is going to zero and going through what amounts to devaluation with increased money supply.

If the Euro rises too far against the Dollar or Sterling it will make exporting difficult (we’ll leave Ireland’s plight with Sterling zone exporters out of this …

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