Many homeowners have found themselves in difficulty with their mortgages in recent years, unable to pay the contracted amount. Because of this, some homeowners have negotiated an Alternative Repayment Arrangement (ARA) to make payments affordable during difficult times.
What we’re seeing is that many of these arrangements are coming to their natural end. Since the arrangement was put in place, interest rates have increased substantially, meaning that you may be back where you were when you initially arranged the ARA. So, what now?
By the end of this blog, you will better understand what to expect and how you can seek advice E.A.R.L.Y. for any questions you may have!
E – Engagement
First, your lender– not necessarily the original lender – will send you a letter to inform you that your interest rate and repayments will rise.
This letter will confirm:
- Your new interest rate,
- The date it will come into effect and,
- Your new repayment amount and the date that the first repayment of this amount will be.
Additionally, this letter will have your lender’s contact details, and they will invite you to get in touch if you have any questions.
A – Arrange
If your mortgage is in arrears, or you are concerned about falling into arrears and contact your lender, your lender will ask for a completed Standard Financial Statement (SFS). However if you’re unsure how to fill out your SFS, advisers in MABS can help – see our office finder to make an appointment.
You can opt for a nominated third party to deal with your lender on your behalf, but you’ll need to provide written authorisation. Then your lender will have to engage with this nominated third party. A nominated third party can be a personal insolvency practitioner (PIP), accountant, or MABS adviser (money adviser or Dedicated Mortgage Arrears Adviser).
Your financial circumstances will be examined and assessed, and you may be asked for additional supporting documentation.
R – Review
Your lender will review their list of solutions and let you know the solution that they feel is most appropriate. The solution offered is based on the borrower’s circumstances and reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Your lender can offer several possible solutions under the Code of Conduct of Mortgage Arrears (CCMA).
If you have the financial ability to provide a genuine offer, your lender will consider a settlement offer from you. Acceptance will be entirely at the discretion of your lender.
L – Look for Help
Understanding this process and what is involved can be difficult. That is where our team of advisers can help you. Your MABS DMA adviser or Abhaile PIP can engage with your lender for you throughout the process if you wish! Simply reach out, and let’s get the conversation started.
Y – Yes, We’re Here to Help
For more information on mortgage arrears, the Abhaile services, tips on taking control of mortgage debt, and some frequently asked mortgage arrears questions, check out our Abhaile homepage.
Would you like some one-to-one free and non-judgmental support with mortgage arrears? Call the MABS National Helpline on 0818 07 2000 Monday to Friday, from 9am to 8pm or request a callback if you want to talk confidentially about mortgage debt or general financial matters.
Disclaimer: This blog does not represent legal advice and is intended for guidance only. If you are concerned about your current or future personal financial situation, then please contact an adviser from MABS. Advisers are available by phone, email, WhatsApp and in-person in locations nationwide.
Note: We welcome references to and use of the content in this blog. However, please reference MABS and link said content if you choose to do so.