What is truth?

A national charity which assists home owners in mortgage arrears has said that almost 50,000 family homes are facing repossession over the coming years, which could result in up to 120,000 people being made homeless.

Homeless.

The Phoenix Project says new measures need to be introduced to prevent homeowners from having their property repossessed. ©UTV Ireland

The figures were published in the Phoenix Project’s annual report, which was launched on Tuesday in Dublin.

The charity provides advice and help to borrowers with mortgage arrears, and the charity says there have been an increasing number of callers availing of their service.

Over a two-year period, calls to the service almost doubled, from 3,176 in 2013 to 5,431 in 2015, according to the report.

Since it was established in 2008, the charity has negotiated agreements on behalf of some 18,000 borrowers to stay in their homes.

Speaking at the report’s launch, Phoenix Project chairman John McGrath said current solutions being offered to the mortgage arrears crisis will be detrimental to homeowners:

“The solutions that the banks and financial institutions have offered many borrowers will result in the repossession of some 49,000 family homes. This is simply unacceptable and will make tens of thousands of families homeless,” Mr McGrath said.

The annual report has included a number of proposals for the government to consider, including the standardisation of guidelines and criteria for split mortgages across all lending institutions, the introduction of term extensions and long-term interest rate reductions and the establishment of independent body to act as the final avenue for appeal for distressed borrowers.

© UTV Ireland

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