Mortgage arrears in Ireland fall despite pandemic’s economic effects

Over the past year, the covid-19 pandemic has caused many economic challenges for Irish citizens and people worldwide. Between level 5 lockdowns, business closures, and soaring levels of unemployment, it would be logical to believe that people may be falling behind on payments, especially mortgages, which are most people’s largest and most important monthly payment. However, recent data shows that the number of mortgages in arrears actually  decreased during the first quarter of 2021, despite level 5 lockdowns and record high unemployment rates.

Recent data from the Central Bank shows that the number of family home loans in arrears decreased by 2,838 during the first three months of 2021. During this period, the Covid-adjusted unemployment rate hit its peak of 25.1 per cent in early January, as thousands of businesses were forced to close their doors due to level 5 lockdowns. This is surprising given that the number of people behind on their mortgage payments actually decreased, while conventional wisdom would expect to see an increase in arrears. This contrast suggests that government supports, such as pandemic unemployment benefits, have …

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Is state intervention required to stop ‘cuckoo’ funds from buying homes?

We spoke to Newstalk about the idea of whether the state needs to intervene to stop ‘cuckoo’ funds from buying up homes. This is because the sale of a housing estate became a national press story due to a fund coming in to buy it up.

It is understandable that people are upset, there are buyers who had set their hopes on living in those properties, but that emotion can’t eradicate the fact that renters are people too and they also need homes, family homes. Or that there are people who may not want to buy or can’t afford to who need family homes.

These things all need to be considered and it isn’t as simple as saying it’s universally good or bad, the clip will help to make this clear.

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House Buying in Ireland

Buying a new home or property is possibly one of the most daunting tasks out there, especially for first-time buyers or international buyers. There are many regulations to keep in mind, and here is just a small list of actions to take that will make this process so much easier.

1: Builder: Contact a local builder and request them to look at the prospective property. They will be able to tell you how much additional work needs to be done for the property, and generally advise the state of the property.

2: Electrician Check: If you have the contact, call in a favor from an electrician to check the wires for issues and maintenance.

3: Structural survey: This will be an investment, and you’ll be surprised at the number of faults this check can find within a property, no matter how pretty the house may look from outside. The usual cost is around €1.5k, but worth it in the long run, if you are to meet large issues.

4: Deposit: Buying international means that you may have to put in …

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First-Time Mortgage Buyers

The COVID Pandemic may have been a financial detriment to many, but there are also families that have been saving due to the lack of activities to participate in. After the lift of quarantine, there is expected to be a rise in the real estate industry. With so many individuals looking to find a mortgage plan, we have comprised a couple of tips on how to use your money more efficiently.

The first major actions to take are opportunities to boost your credit file. If you look online, there are thousands of articles on how to do so. But for an official site, there is none better than the Money Advice Service list. Here are just a couple of ways to improve your credit score:

1: Pay your bills on time. This may sound obvious, but many people overlook this. With being able to pay all your bills on time, there will be no more drops in your credit score, and it can only go up from there.

2: Register yourself on the electoral roll. This is such a quick …

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Paying Off Mortgage During the Pandemic

Many people have found themselves struggling financially as the COVID pandemic drags on for longer than expected. In this, having to pay your mortgage may be one of the largest stressors for most. With that, there are some actions you can take to help deal with this.  

Always ensure effective communication with your lender. Speak with them if you are struggling to manage your finances and come up with a plan or budget system to repay your mortgage. If you are unable to repay, do not cancel or stop your direct debit without speaking and communicating with your lender first. On top of that, if you are unable to repay your mortgage in full every period, if you can repay it in a smaller amount than usual, then you should do that.

But even with everyone’s financial struggles during this period, the lender is not exempt from helping their clients. The lender may find that many of their clients are having issues with paying the mortgage in full and should be accommodating. But with that, the lender must also keep …

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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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Three Things to do Before Taking out a Mortgage

Let’s face it mortgages are daunting; with interest rates, terms, and credit scores. Many things can make finding a mortgage a challenge but what are the most important things you need to know before taking out a mortgage? Well, you’re in luck, these are three main takeaways that you should know before taking out a mortgage.

SAVE SAVE SAVE

When preparing yourself to take out a mortgage, being financially secure is extremely important. You will want to have enough to make sure you have enough for a good down payment. This isn’t the only reason you want to be saving though. You will also want to have enough in your account for any unexpected expenses that may pop up due to things such as closing costs, and inspections. Liquidity (cash) is just as important as saving for a down payment. Banks and other financial lending institutions look at the balance of your accounts prior to approval to validate your ability to afford your desired home.

Along with saving, you will want to keep your account in order. Avoid overdrafts, late …

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Mortgage lenders in Ireland

There are ten mortgage lenders in Ireland. AIB, Bank of Ireland, EBS, Finance Ireland, Haven, ICS/Dilosk, KBC, PTsb, Ulster Bank and Credit Unions.

A mortgage broker can help you make an application to all of them except for the EBS who don’t distribute through brokers and Credit Unions who have to be applied to directly and individually.

The main comparison between lenders is their interest rate, but there are many other features of a loan to consider such as the rates that may apply after a fixed rate expires, cash-back and other terms and features that are specific to loans from certain banks.

For instance, some lenders will let you overpay a fixed rate mortgage, others will penalize you if you do that. To find out more get in touch and we can help you figure out what lender is the best for your circumstances.

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Today FM The Last Word features Irish Mortgage Brokers talking about Ulsterbank loan sale

We were happy to take part in a conversation on the Last Word with Matt Cooper about the recent Ulsterbank loan sale, Karl Deeter was there for Irish Mortgage Brokers and Mick Barry TD was also part of the interview.

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Mortgage approvals

Analysing figures released by the Banking and Payments Federation, the article sends a somewhat contradictory message. On the one hand, first time buyer mortgage approval volumes increased 19% this April compared to April of 2016. However, this volume also represents a 8.4% drop from the number of mortgages approved last month in March.

The decrease in the number of first time buyer mortgages this month is not indicative of the generally increasing annual trend, and may be due to the lack of buyer discounts offered in the month of April, when there isn’t many major holidays or events. April is generally the worst time of the year to finance a house (Business Insider).

On a larger scale, the trend in approval volumes for all mortgages follows that of first time buyer mortgages, but to a less exaggerated extent. The number in April represents an increase of 11.7% compared to April of 2016, and a decrease of 11.6% compared to March of this year.

The greater increase in first time buyer mortgages as compared to all mortgages could indicate that more …

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