Despite numerous Government pledges to tackle the issue of high variable mortgage rates, variable rates here are still nearly double the Euro area average, according to local Fianna Fail Deputy, Frank O’Rourke.
“According to the recent Central Bank figures, the average interest rate on new mortgages in September of this year stood at 3.31%; this is nearly double the equivalent rate across the Euro area, which stood at 1.86%.”
“Mortgage rates in Ireland remain dramatically out of line with rates charged elsewhere in Europe, and we must ensure that this is addressed. We have pressed for the extension of mortgage relief for those who bought their home during the peak of the boom, however, we must now focus on the variable rate that is being charged by Irish banks. ”
“This means that a borrower with a mortgage of €200,000 is paying around €250 per month more than they would be paying in the average Euro area country.”
“In May 2016, a Fianna Fáil Bill designed to give the Central Bank powers to tackle excessive variable mortgage rates passed second stage in the Dáil. The progress of the Bill through the legislative process has been tortuous and painfully slow. Despite not opposing the Bill at second stage, it is abundantly clear the Government does not want the Bill to become law. We will continue to press for this Bill to be passed.”
“Putting €250 per month back into families will help the local economy, bring down the cost of living and ease wage inflation pressure. I see again this weekend that Fine Gael are trying to make a priority of reducing the top rate of tax, as opposed to focusing on the cost of living for people. Focus on reducing the cost of living will bring a multitudes of benefits to our local economy and hard pressed families that have mortgages,” concluded Deputy O’Rourke.