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Homeowners get writedown in AIB scheme

MOre than 1,300 distressed mortgage-holders have secured debt writedowns with AIB thanks to a pilot scheme.

The scheme came about when the Irish Mortgage Holders Organisation (IMHO) entered into an arrangement to act as a third-party broker to advise distressed borrowers in their dealings with the AIB group.

The IMHO outlined figures today that show that in its first year it agreed 1,330 long-term resolutions for people in mortgage arrears.

Resolutions

It said between 75 and 100 of those deals involved debt write-down on family home mortgages of €1,000-€190,000, where the families were allowed to continue living in their homes.

A further 279 resolutions included debt write-down involving properties that were then voluntarily sold, with most of these in the buy-to-let sector.

The IMHO said that the initiative is available free of charge to all AIB Group customers - including EBS and Haven - experiencing residential mortgage difficulties.

In 30pc of the cases they examined, customers who were facing repossession proceedings managed to achieve a long-term sustainable solution.

Some 43pc of clients needed assistance completing the standard financial statement.

David Hall, CEO of the Irish Mortgage Holders Organisation, said: "The pilot with AIB has resulted in a very significant number of families and individual homeowners having their mortgage challenges resolved.

"Those involved often appeared to be trapped in intractable cases. The relief to clients has been invaluable, allowing them to move on with their lives, making affordable mortgage payments.

"We welcome the Oireachtas Finance Committee's recommendation in their report on mortgage arrears in July, which recommended that this project be rolled out nationally involving all banks."

AIB said the scheme, which is free, has delivered significantly for customers who might not otherwise have engaged with the bank.

It has now decided to extend the scheme for another 12 months. The IMHO team is now receiving over 125 calls per day.

The extension of the scheme means that, in many of these distressed-mortgage cases, a resolution can now be achieved within eight weeks.

clairemurphy@herald.ie


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