Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Home possessions set to soar.

Joanne Spain has an article on the Home Possessions crisis on the Irish Left Review. As she notes its an elephant in the room that nobody seems to want to face up.

Sixteen months after the Dublin government committed the state to underwriting the six main banks’ total deposits and loans, and half a year since the introduction of the NAMA initiative - the issue of home repossessions has come to the fore. Billions of euro have been invested in the banks, eleven to be exact. Not a cent has gone into helping people talked by the banks, developers, estate agents and government policy into buying overpriced houses at the peak of the boom.

Most of these people are now sitting in houses with massive negative equity, trapped in extortionate long-term fixed rate mortgages, and saddled with 30-year debts that they are struggling to repay in the current climate of wage cuts and job losses.

All of these people will have been pleased to hear the government announcement at the start of February that it is committed to helping homeowners struggling with mortgage payments. However, the ambiguity about what form this help will take and the fact that the government is not talking about implementing any plan until the summer, is no help. The only ‘help’ on offer for the past year has been a moratorium on repossessions, but that has run out now and only applied to the six guaranteed banks anyway. Almost one home a day was repossessed last year following proceedings by non-guaranteed banks.

Read the rest of the article

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