Allow families pass on home loans to children, says group

Allow families pass on home loans to children, says group

A support group for people in financial distress is calling on the Government to allow mortgage holders pass on their home loans to their children.

The Phoenix Project releases its 2015 annual report today in which it says repossessions are still a major issue in Ireland.

It wants banks to adopt a Scandinavian model of mortgage retailing in order to make repayments cheaper over the lifetime of the loan.

"In Scandinavian countries there are such things as lifetime mortgages, generational mortgages, where someone can have the mortgage going on past their passing, and where their son or daughter or whatever would take up the mortgage and sell the property and/or clear off the mortgage," explained chairman of the Phoenix Project, John McGrath.

The number of calls to the service has almost doubled, from 3,176 in 2013 to 5,431 in 2015, according to the report.

The charity says that, since its inception, it has negotiated agreements on behalf of some 18,000 borrowers to stay in their homes.

Speaking at the report’s launch, Mr McGrath said: “The solutions that the banks and financial institutions have offered many borrowers will result in the repossession of some 49,000 family homes.

“This is simply unacceptable and will make tens of thousands of families homeless.

“Any increase in interest rates will result in even more borrowers being forced into having their homes repossessed.

“We are calling on the Government to address this situation. Our report contains a number of cost-neutral solutions that we believe will ease the escalating mortgage arrears crisis.”

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