November 27, 2023
Sale to vulture funds must be ruled out as Ulster Bank lay ground for sale of 4,500 mortgage accounts – Pearse Doherty TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Finance, Pearse Doherty TD, has responded to the announcement by Ulster Bank that it will compensate 4,500 customers who hold offset mortgages with the bank as it withdraws from the Irish market.

The Donegal TD said there should be a clear expectation that these mortgage loans are sold to mainstream lenders and not vulture funds.

Speaking today, Teachta Doherty said:

“Today Ulster Bank have announced that 4,500 of its mortgage customers will receive compensation as they lose their offset mortgage facility.

“This allowed customers to reduce the interest on their mortgage by either using funds in their current or savings accounts, or to move money they had on deposit to reduce their mortgage balance.

“It is clear that Ulster Bank have now paved the way for the sale of these 4,500 mortgage loans.

“There should be a clear expectation that these loans are sold to and purchased by a mainstream mortgage lender. They should not be sold to vulture funds.

“Ulster Bank have changed the terms of these customers’ mortgages. It is now incumbent on them to rule out their sale to any vulture fund.

“Today I have written to the CEO of Ulster Bank seeking this assurance.

“This is also an opportunity for the remaining retail banks to show they value the interests of consumers, and recognise the harm done by previous loan sales to vulture funds.

“I urge the retail banking sector not to fail this crucial test.

“I note that Ulster Bank have urged customers to be vigilant against scammers and fraudsters who may try to take advantage of this process.

“I reiterate that call, especially as the Government have abjectly failed to tackle this growing and devastating criminal activity.

“Customers should consider the compensation offered carefully and seek independent financial advice.”

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