‘Tsunami of vul­ture fund evic­tions on way’

‘17k homes at risk as banks out­source dirty work’

Irish Daily Mail - - World News - By Se­nan Molony se­nan.molony@dai­ly­mail.ie

A ‘TSUNAMI’ of home re­pos­ses­sion by vul­ture funds is head­ing down the tracks if an al­ter­na­tive is not found, a Dáil com­mit­tee has been warned.

Speak­ing be­fore the fi­nance com­mit­tee yes­ter­day David Hall of the Ir­ish Mort­gage Hold­ers Or­gan­i­sa­tion said some 17,000 peo­ple were fac­ing the re­pos­ses­sion over the next few years.

And he added that the banks cur­rently sell­ing loans to vul­ture funds were ‘cow­ards’ for not in­form­ing politi­cians of the se­vere chal­lenges that will ex­ist for cus­tomers.

The vul­ture funds, once they se­cure the loans, will re­spond en­thu­si­as­ti­cally by re­pos­sess­ing homes, Mr Hall said. He added that be­cause banks did not want to re­struc­ture their loans they were ‘out­sourc­ing their dirty work.’ ‘I be­lieve Ir­ish banks have taken an­other gam­ble: that it’s bet­ter to take the back­lash of ‘Grave’: IMHO’s David Hall sell­ing fam­ily home loans to vul­tures rather than the chaos that will en­sue if they re­pos­sess the homes of cus­tomers who can’t pay,’ he said.

He said those who say that the vul­tures have not shown any ag­gres­sion so far were ‘naive’, be­cause those funds were watch­ing the value of their port­fo­lio in­crease month on month with­out hav­ing to evict any­one. This will not be so for­ever,’ he warned. ‘The tsunami is com­ing un­less some­thing rad­i­cal is done.’

And he called for steps to es­tab­lish a Nama-type or­gan­i­sa­tion for house­hold­ers. This would mean tak­ing over loans in ar­rears from all of the lenders.

‘This sit­u­a­tion is now so grave that while bash­ing banks and vul­ture funds is ther­a­peu­tic, it ac­tu­ally misses the key is­sue that 17,000 fam­i­lies will be evicted un­less an al­ter­na­tive is sorted,’ he said. Mr Hall pre­dicted vast num­bers would have been forced out of their homes by the end of 2020. ‘Look at the cur­rent home­less­ness list. Quadru­ple it. That is where we are destined to be in two years.’

Mean­while, Hous­ing Min­is­ter Eoghan Mur­phy has been ac­cused of be­ing in­com­pe­tence or mis­lead­ing over the mis­cal­cu­la­tion of home­less fig­ures.

Sinn Féin’s hous­ing spokesman Eoin Ó Broin ques­tioned the min­is­ter’s abil­ity to do his job as Mr Mur­phy con­firmed that‘ sig­nif­i­cant m is cat­e­gori­sa­tions’ had been dis­cov­ered while pre­par­ing the home­less fig­ures for March and the to­tal num­ber of peo­ple in emer­gency ac­com­mo­da­tion had been over­stated.

Mr Ó Broin ear­lier this month ac­cused the min­is­ter of ma­nip­u­lat­ing sta­tis­tics to en­sure the num­ber re­mained be­low 10,000.

Mr Mur­phy was an­swer­ing ques­tions at the Oireach­tas hous­ing com­mit­tee yes­ter­day.

The March home­less fig­ure showed there were 9,681 peo­ple in emer­gency ac­com­mo­da­tion.

How­ever, over 600 peo­ple had been deleted from the fig­ures for March af­ter Mr Mur­phy said a num­ber of coun­cils wrongly cat­e­gorised peo­ple liv­ing in lo­cal author­ity houses as home­less. Sinn Féin said these peo­ple were in emer­gency ac­com­mo­da­tion as they did not have a ten­ancy.

‘Banks pass­ing the buck’

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