Mortgage arrears: Just one in five homeowners getting lower payment deal

JUST one in five homeowners who are in arrears has been offered a permanent deal to lower their payments by their bank.

New figures out this afternoon show that close to 15,000 of the almost 74,000 residential mortgage accounts that are arrears for three months or more have had a permanent restructure put in place.

But the overall number of residential mortgage accounts that are in arrears fell in May, the Department of Finance said.

There are now close to 74,000 residential mortgage accounts in arrears for three months or more, down from close to 80,000 at the end of last year.

Banks are giving out more split mortgages as a way to deal with those unable to meet their repayments.

A split mortgage divides a mortgage into two parts. The first part is paid as normal and the second part is put to one side, with most banks allowing nothing to be paid on the part that is “warehoused”.

Some 12,857 split mortgages had been put in place by May, up from just 2,500 in March, the Department said.

The figures outline the arrears and the number of permanent repayment deals put in place by AIB, Bank of Ireland, Permanent TSB, ACC, KBC Ireland and Ulster Bank

The lenders represent 90pc of the market, and are under orders from the Central Bank to meet specific targets for dealing with residential arrears cases.