Government launch campaign to highlight help available for distressed homeowners

The Government has launched a new information campaign, reaching out to affected homeowners in financial difficulty.

A new survey shows two-thirds of homeowners in mortgage arrears are unaware that help is available to them.

It also found that 33%of those who had experienced being in mortgage arrears would not consult family or friends about their situation.

The campaign is to highlight the benefits of the new Abhaile advice service, through which homeowners can access free advice and help from specialist debt advisers.

CEO of the Citizens' Information Board Angela Black said homeowners can access free advice and help from specialist debt advisers.

“Two thirds don’t know that there is free expert legal and financial advice available to them.

“MABS has moved into a space of looking after people with mortgage arrears and as such we have about 30 dedicated mortgage arrears advisers in place.”

The Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality, Frances Fitzgerald TD, said:

‘Today’s survey underlines a very real need. The Government is committed to ensuring that homeowners who are struggling with mortgage arrears, and are at risk of losing their homes, can access expert help and advice.

“That advice can relieve the stress and isolation experienced by people who are in financial distress, break financial problems down to manageable solutions, and most importantly, help people return to solvency.”

Under the new Abhaile service, homeowners can now access free advice and help from a specialist debt adviser, a personal insolvency practitioner, or a solicitor, aimed at identifying the best long-term solution for them and getting it into place.

Minister Varadkar said: “Abhaile is already proving to be one of the most effective ways to help people who are in mortgage arrears and at risk of losing their home.

“There are few things in life more distressing than the possibility of seeing your family home repossessed. This is clearly borne out in the survey which reveals the impact it can have on the lives of individuals and their families. But too many of these same families are not aware of the expert financial and legal advice available through Abhaile.”

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