Third of mortgage holders face repayment difficulties

THE holders of up to a third of the country’s estimated 800,000 residential mortgages could be facing significant difficulties in meeting their home loan repayments, if the results of a survey are replicated nationwide.

Of the 1,000 people questioned about their mortgages by Amárach Research last week, 33% said their repayments are either “causing them some concern” or “are a real problem right now”.

Furthermore, 40% of the 1,000 respondents admitted they believe within 12 months, their mortgage repayments will be either “a source of greater concern” or a “real problem”.

When questioned between November 17 and 21 as to how manageable their mortgage repayments are, 19% of respondents, described by the authors as a nationally representative sample, said they were easily manageable for now.

A further 48% said they would remain manageable as long as the holder was careful. However, 22% replied that the repayments were causing them real concern and 11% said they were a real problem right now.

A year down the line, just 14% reckoned their repayments would still be easily manageable and 46% said they would remain manageable as long as they were careful. However, 31% admitted that by that stage they expected their payments to be a greater concern and 9% said they would be a real problem.

Figures published by the Central Bank last week showed almost 789,000 mortgages on homes, amounting to €117.4bn with banks in this country.

The survey, carried out on behalf of RTÉ’s Frontline programme, also asked respondents who they would prefer to run the country.

Despite lots of media coverage in the last week over the loss of sovereignty, 43% of the respondents admitted they wanted the EU and IMF to hold the reins of power, while just 53% said they were happy to keep the running of the country within the control of our own politicians.

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