No more mortgage increases
For the first time in a very long time, we have some good news on the mortgage front.
Matthew Elderfield, the no-nonsense financial regulator, has told six of the biggest mortgage lenders in the country to stop increasing the interest rates on their standard variable rate loans or else.
Elderfield has no power to cap the rates but he has threatened the banks that if they don’t agree to his request he will seek a ‘public policy response’, essentially get a law put in place to make it illegal.
Elderfield met with the CEOs of AIB, Bank of Ireland, EBS, Permanent TSB, Ulster Bank and KBC this week and told them that they were putting people under too much strain and that they could not exploit standard variable rate mortgages to cover the losses they are receiving on tracker mortgages and other bad deals done in the boom.
The news is a massive relief to those on variable mortgages and it is the first sign that somebody in power is listening to those in need in the country.
With the European Central Bank expected to reduce its interest rate next month by 0.25 per cent, a further boost to tracker and variable mortgage holders, things may finally be looking up for the average Irish mortgage holder.