Bloomberg News

Irish Central Bank Says Negative-Equity Mortgages Likely Limited

February 15, 2012

Feb. 15 (Bloomberg) -- Ireland’s central bank said that so- called negative equity mortgages, currently on offer by two domestic banks, will probably apply to a “very limited number of mortgage customers.”

The product allows homeowners whose property is worth less than the loan to bring the negative balance with them as they trade in for a new home. It has been offered by two banks since mid-2011 on a trial basis, the Dublin-based central bank said in an e-mailed statement.

Spokesmen for Bank of Ireland Plc and Irish Life & Permanent Plc confirmed they are offering such loans, subject to strict conditions. The central bank said lenders wishing to offer such loans must enter talks into with it.

The product “will only apply in very exceptional circumstances as part of solutions for individual customers,” Ray Gordon, a spokesman for Irish Life, said by phone.

To contact the reporter on this story: Joe Brennan in Dublin at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Finbarr Flynn at

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