Quarantine Leading to a Rise in Property Prices

As the COVID quarantine still impacts our daily lives by forcing people to work from home and limit public interaction, the predicted property prices in Ireland are said to skyrocket as much as 6% this upcoming year. In the newly released annual review today by The Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland (SCSI), out of their three agents, two of them predicted an increase in property rates in 2021.

While that 6% is said to be an average across Ireland, different areas are predicted to have slightly varying inflated rates. For example, Dublin, as the area with the highest current prices, is predicted to see an average increase of 3% in property prices. But for other areas such as Leinster and Munster, are predicted to have price increases of 4% and 5 % respectively. Some areas are predicted to see price increase reflecting this past year within the range of 1-3%, yet other areas are predicted to experience price increases that could even reach 8%.

According to SCSI’s vice president; TJ Cronin, many of these seen increases in prices are said …

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Tips to Switching Your Mortgage

Changing your mortgage plan may very well be the best or worst decision you can ever make. If done well, it could relieve you of a lot of financial stress and help save you a large amount of money. This seems like such a big task, so we have broken it down and listed a few tips on how to get started!

First, understand your current situation. What are your scheduled payment amounts and how does that affect your budget? What type of mortgage do you have right now? Do you have an interest-only mortgage, a pension mortgage, an annuity mortgage, or a different type of mortgage? Most importantly would be the current interest rate you are paying. And all these factors can make a difference when changing mortgages and if that transition is for you. For example, with a standard variable rate (the rate you will be charged at the end of your fixed interest rate), switching can save a lot of money.

Second, make sure to do your own research and speak to multiple banks and mortgage brokers. …

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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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Is a ten year fixed rate a good idea?

Recently KBC introduced a 10 year fixed rate, they are not the first back to have done this, in the past other banks had them but their prices were high, the difference today is that you can get a 10 year fixed rate mortgage for below 3% and that means it’s worth considering.

First of all, why would you want to fix for so long? Obviously the longevity of a guaranteed price in a world where rates are expected to rise over time makes it attractive. This has to be balanced against the likelihood of competitive forces driving down Irish mortgage rates. Currently there is upside down pricing where fixed rates are cheaper than variable rates, how long this will last is anybody’s guess.

What we can do is look at the yield curve in order to get an idea of when rates might go up. Looking at that curve today (the quote date is from the 22nd which is last Friday) we see that yields are still negative a full six years into the future.  What …

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Independent Newspaper mentions Irish Mortgage Brokers

In an article today about mortgages by John Cradden of the Irish Independent we were quoted extensively regarding our thoughts on loans, extracts are below:

Last month saw the official launch of a new mortgage lender here in the form of Australian firm Pepper, who will be lending to the self-employed and those who got into arrears during the downturn but are now back on track.

“Up to now, if you had credit issues you were virtually unbankable, that is set to change,” said Karl Deeter of Irish Mortgage Brokers. “Equally, as banks add bells and whistles to their product suite, you’ll see some will be about flexibility rather than price and that’s a sign of competition in product differentiation coming through.”

He adds that rates will improve with the new competition. “This was what happened in the last credit cycle and will happen again so time will take care of that, but Ireland also has unusually high risk associated with our loans so that has to be factored in.”

The cashback offers are another popular incentive, with …

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Irish Mortgage Brokers mentioned in the Independent

In an article by Sinead Ryan in the Independent we were quoted on several matters:

With all the talk of celebrating the Rising in 2016, it won’t extend to a rising mortgage market, says broker Karl Deeter. “The changes to lending criteria and in particular the Central Bank changes meant that while 90pc LTV (loan to value) mortgages were available, as the year progressed more banks started to withdraw them. Due to the way the figures are going to be reported in 2016 it will be a case of, ‘Want a 90pc mortgage? Get it in January or July’. And that’s because the half-year periods are going to be the times in which they are mostly available.”

One positive change, says Deeter, was that interest rates came down during the year, in particular fixed rates as banks came under pressure to explain Ireland’s excessive rates compared to those enjoyed by our EU neighbours. Although all banks rocked up at the Banking Inquiry, and most were (or tried their best to sound) contrite, the truth is that pillar Bank …

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Mortgage rates falling and set to head even lower

We were never advocates or in agreement with the ‘make government force mortgage rates down’ campaign (albeit on very friendly terms with the campaign promoters). The reason was that rates needed to come down in a natural way or banks would curtail credit or charge more elsewhere, this was a balancing act between sorting out operational costs and back book issues.

The belief we had, and one that does seem to be bearing fruit, was a slower (ie: less popular) road to lower rates, brought about by competition.

This has been happening, it doesn’t make headlines because it’s a slower burn but the trend is under way and it goes like this: more competition equals lower rates, the higher rates spur competition as it attracts new entrants and in time, when matched with a low yield curve, rates will fall.

The introduction of Pepper into the market, along with general competition has meant that the rate reduction cycle has begun. The hallmarks are that firstly, rates are high after a financial crash, that always happens, those high rates bring in …

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Fixed rate comparison Ireland

When it comes to fixed mortgage rates in Ireland there is a little confusion, the first being about ‘whether to fix or not’ and secondly, if by doing so will you lose out should Irish lenders choose to lower their mortgage rates.

The simple answer is that if you fix your mortgage you may win or lose depending on what rates do, but that is missing the point of why you fix to begin with. It provides you with certainty of payments and often there is a premium due because of this, in simple terms, you pay a bit more for the ‘fixed’ assurance.

Below is a list of some of the best fixed rates in Ireland as well as who offers them.

Best 3yr fixed rate: 3.6% offered by PTsb and Bank of Ireland

(note: you can get better again by going with KBC and opening an account which gets you 3.55%)

Best 5yr fixed rate: 3.8% offered by Ulsterbank, BOI and Haven/AIB

These are ‘tiered variable rates’ meanining you have to have a low loan to value or …

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Newstalk: Pat Kenny Show on variable rates

We were asked to speak with Pat Kenny today about variable rates and the government plan to intervene to make banks drop them. This was, after considering various pieces of evidence shown to be a deeply political rather than pragmatic move. We also demonstrated that there are documents which the Minister for Finance had drafted up with the banks specifically stating that he would not intervene on matters of pricing, the recent round of ‘meetings’ is in direct contravention of that.

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Drop rates so banks can lend more…

In the ongoing variable rates pricing fracas there are many points being overlooked. The first is why our mortgage rates are higher than other European countries, but we should just ignore that – at least to stay popular.

We’ll say that the government/Central Bank pressure works and banks drop their rates, what next?

We might get around to the greater number of people under price pressure for housing (the renters), but that’s unlikely, instead we’ll inadvertently drive up house prices a little more by making credit more easily available.

Because the lower the variable rate the lower the stress test. Lower rates equals more credit, it’s a fact of life in lending.

You heard it here first. The lower variable rates go the more it frees up a persons lending capability. We have covered the way the Central Bank lending rules won’t work to the point of being annoying (and we weren’t alone, the ESRI and …

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