Repossession bid ‘sprung upon’ young family

A young couple with a new baby and three other children said yesterday they had a lender’s application to repossess their rural home “sprung upon them”.

Repossession  bid ‘sprung upon’ young family

The family were among 77 cases before the County Registrar’s ‘Possession and Well-Charging’ Court in Tralee — the highest number to date.

Solicitor Aidan O’Connell represented the young Killarney couple brought to the court by Irish Bank Resolution Corporation.

The house, in a rural part of Killarney, was bought in 2006 for €213,000 with a 93% loan. The court heard that some €226,000 is owed and its current market value is €155,000. The bank now wanted an order for repossession, its solicitor said.

“This is a surprise to my clients. They have a new baby. He works only seasonally. She is on maternity leave. They believed they were in discussions and had reached an agreement,” Mr O’Connell said.

County Registrar Padraig Burke said he wanted to see stress tests by the bank, as well as affidavits from the couple to see if they could pay more and he also recommended that the various housing agencies be contacted. He adjourned the matter for two months.

A protest took place outside the court where the applications by financial institutions for the possession of houses took place — a number of properties were family homes and others were investment properties.

EBS Ltd and its various subsidiaries, including the EBS Building Society, EBS Ltd, EBS Mortgage Finance, accounted for a high number of the applications — some 32 in all.

Ulster Bank accounted for some 17 applications while AIB Mortgage Bank and Allied Irish Banks accounted for 16; Anglo Irish Bank Corporation (3); Bank of Ireland Mortgage (1); Bank of Scotland Ireland, (2); Irish Bank Resolution Corporation Ltd, (2); Haven Mortgages Ltd (1); and Stepstone Mortgage Funding (1) were the other lending institutions

County Registrar Mr Burke said he wished to underline “a general point” to the solicitors acting on behalf of the financial institutions that adequate documentation was not being provided in the applications, including basic affidavits.

As well as basic documents, he wanted to see evidence of stress-testing of the couples who took out the loans by the institutions at the time of lending.

One man had an offer of €55,000 for the home he had a mortgage of €160,000 on. He had a wife and child and his wife did not work. He was now working in Dublin and paying rent of €975 from his €2,500 monthly salary.

Only one matter concerned a well-charging issue and this was brought by Paudie O’Mahoney and Associates (now in liquidation) against a man now living in Thailand, for fees owed.

So far this year five houses have been repossessed in Kerry and four more properties are set for repossession in the next weeks.

Last year there were 13 houses repossessed.

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