Month: June 2010

Should support be provided for those with mortgage arrears?

Should support be provided for those with mortgage arrears?

Should support be provided for those with mortgage arrearsAfter a 2-week visit to Ireland last month, the IMF released a report yesterday commending the measures the Irish Government took to deal with its financial crisis. The report also endorsed plans to help struggling homeowners burdened with mortgage difficulties as a result of the financial crisis by putting in place “narrowly-targeted support measures for vulnerable homeowners”.

Most recent figures show that 1 in every 25 or some 32,000 residential mortgage holders in the state have not paid their mortgage for three months or more. Under the new recommendations (which are to be made next week) lenders will have to collaborate with hard pressed mortgage holders and offer them one or a combination of the following;

Property Tax: Yes, No, Yes, No, Yes, No…Yes… No…?

Property Tax: Yes, No, Yes, No, Yes, No…Yes… No…?

Property Tax: Yes, No, Yes, No, Yes, No…Yes… No…?The suggestion of a possible introduction of a property tax has taken up more newspaper space again today. During yesterdays Dáil meeting Taoiseach Brian Cowen told the Government that he has still made no firm decisions on whether or not to introduce a property tax in the next budget. He commented that such a move / introduction would require “major structural changes in the taxation system”.

Along with many other TDs, leader of Fine Gael Enda Kenny took no prisoners yesterday and asked the Taoiseach for a “Yes” or “No” answer and said by not clarifying or confirming whether the tax would be introduced or not implied that the idea has not been ruled out. He said that the whole idea of the tax was grossly unfair and that “there is plenty of scope to reduce borrowing without the introduction of a property tax”.

Tough new rules for mortgage lenders

Tough new rules for mortgage lenders

Tough new rules for mortgage lendersIt is hard to believe but true that Ireland is one of the few countries in Europe where there are no rules limiting the overall debts that a household can accumulate – BUT that’s all about to change. Yesterday the Financial Regulator unveiled a sweep a new measures to put manners on Ireland’s financial institutions as part of a major clampdown on bank lending.

Regulators will now be keeping a very close eye on all lending by banks to households and potential homeowners will now find it even more difficult to get their hands a mortgage as tough new rules will make remove the ease of getting one that was there during the boom times.

Negative equity loans to be made available

Negative equity loans to be made available

Negative equity loans to be made availableThe idea of the negative equity mortgage for homeowners has raised its head and many lenders are planning to latch onto the controversial idea namely; Irish Nationwide, Bank of Ireland, Permanent TSB along with one or two others.

Currently if you are in negative equity it means that you cannot up sticks and sell your house. But under this new deal it would allow you take the negative equity portion of your current mortgage on to a new one when you move house.

Pros?

  • Supposedly it could help boost the slumped property market and provide a “lifeline” to those trapped in a location where they no longer want to live.

Cons?

Quick fire property sales: Are they value for money?

Quick fire property sales: Are they value for money?

Quick fire property sales: Are they value for money?Receivership sales are becoming more common as the banks try to sell off the surplus of houses and apartment schemes left over by the Tiger.

Last week a quick fire sale of apartments in Carrickmines, one of the large Dublin developments, saw 89 units up for grabs with only 4 left unsold by Monday evening. The sale of these properties would have been eyed closely by other receivership companies planning to sell stock in the coming months.

While low prices may attract buyers to quick-fire property sales do they actually offer real value for money?

Electricity Bills May Rise Over Levy

Electricity Bills May Rise Over Levy

Electricity bills may rise over levySurprise surprise but another household bill may just be on the rise again in the not so distant future. This time round our electricity bill is set to get slapped with an extra €40 a year due to a Government proposal to pay for green energy incentives and support of peat-fired power plants.

As it said in the papers every year the Commission for Energy Regulation imposes a public service charge on all electricity users to pay for incentives for renewable energy and to support peat-fired power plants.

Affordable housing transferred for use as social housing

Affordable housing transferred for use as social housing

Affordable housing transferred for use as social housing Local Authorities have transferred more than 1,500 affordable housing units for use as social housing in an attempt to address the excess of unsold properties following the downturn in the housing market. With the current climate the demand for affordable housing, a scheme that was designed to provide homes at a discount to the market price for people who could not afford to buy a home on the open market, has more or less collapsed.

3 Properties for under €220,000 in Tipperary

3 Properties for under €220,000 in Tipperary

3 Properties for under €220,000 in Tipperary

This weeks three properties for under €220,000 are all based in the premier county of Tipperary. First property on the list and the least expensive of our three properties is a 3 bed semi detached located just outside Tipperary Town and on the market for €210,000. The description for 62 Springfield Grove in Rossmore Village has been kept short and sweet; it has been described as a bright, spacious and well laid out detached home in an attractive, sharply designed development. The property also comes with a Homebond Warranty.

Moving up north of the county our second Tipperary property on the list is 136 Collie Bheithe, a 4 bed detached dormer in Neagh town. On the market for €219,950 property features include,

Rent Supplement to be reduced

Rent Supplement to be reduced

Rent Supplement to be reducedAlthough the cost of living still remains high in Ireland it has been announced that the Rent Supplement is being reduced with maximum rent supplements limits being cut by up to 36% for tenants who are entering into new leases or renewing leases.

Minister for Social Protection Eamon Ó Cuiv said that the new reductions have been put in place to reflect the fall in current rental values and also to ensure that landlords are not charging artificially high rents. He also said that the new rates related to the next eighteen months and that they would be reviewed if rents increase during that period.

The new rates are now as follows:

The banking crisis blame game: Will any one be held accountable?

The banking crisis blame game: Will any one be held accountable?

The banking crisis blame game: Will any one be held accountable?Two preliminary reports produced earlier this week for the Government by Klaus Regling, Max Watson and Patrick Honohan on the banking crisis critised the Governments management of the economy during the boom and found that the banking crisis was caused by a simple over reliance on property lending.

The reports concluded that Ireland’s financial crisis was a homemade crisis, a run-of-the-mill property crash, “A plain vanilla property bubble” funded by excessive overseas borrowings by the financial institutions. They highlighted that overall fiscal policies notable in 2007 when Brian Cowan was Finance Minister contributed “markedly to the overheating economy… that had tax incentives boosting rather than restraining an overheated construction sector”.

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