Should Govt CPO houses with worst case mortgage arrears?

There has been recent talk that government could cpo vacant properties or force nursing home residents to let their properties out. It strikes me as pretty drastic.

If they are going to CPO anything they should start with those who are not paying for their properties. There are currently 32000 houses over 720 days in arrears. If you have got to the stage that you have not paid your mortgage in over 2 years, it is clearly unsustainable (or you’re taking the piss).

IMO Government should CPO all 32000 of them. Deal with the properties and occupants in a case by case basis:

  • if occupants qualify for social housing, there are no spare bedrooms in the house, and it would cost government more to rehouse them then keep them in that property as social housing.

  • if occupants qualify for social housing but have spare bedrooms and/or are in location above their means, then free up the property and move occupants elsewhere. Provide original property as social housing for bigger family or put on open rental market.

  • if occupants don’t qualify for social housing, then let the free market look after them. I.e feck them out and free up the property for somebody who will pay for it.

It’s essentially a big exercise in musical chairs but it would go a long way to solving the homeless problem, and the arrears problem.

No doubt some people would wail about constitutional property rights but it seems fairer to trample on the property rights of those who are not paying for the property rather than those rights of those who simply choose to leave their property vacant for whatever reason.

This must have occurred to government but they have decided against it for whatever reason; so what are the flaws in this plan that I am missing?

So an elderly couple getting 100k+ worth of nursing care a year who may not have paid much tax into the system shouldn’t be expected to pay towards it even if they’ve a valuable and much needed asset sitting idle?

Libertarianism Irish style.

The Fair Deal scheme does mean they make a contribution.

And yes I’d rather my taxes go towards subsidies for the care of the elderly than paying somebody’s mortgage.

How about an elderly couple who’ve not only paid nothing into the system but who’ve done nothing but *take out *from the system for their entire lives (via “social” housing, welfare, medical card, free this, free that etc.) At least in the first example the couple have housed themselves from after-tax income without running to the taxpayer for all of their needs and wants - like hundreds of thousands in Ireland.

Contribution. Yes. Which examines income and liquid assets? Which is why many people don’t bother to rent out the house.

Correct me if I’m wrong: if they have 500k sitting in the bank the State expects them to use that?

A 500k empty house should be treated differently because?

That’s a sickener alright. However if you’re going to have a threshold below which assets/estate can’t be touched I don’t see why housing should be a special category

Because we’re the only country in the world that treats the “family home” as sacred, so much so that the government pledges to protect those people who do not pay their mortgages. Skip your TV licence and they’ll throw you in jail, but take a pass on your mortgage for 5 years and the government will underwrite it with your neighbours taxes.

The question I am asking in this thread is why should the family home be sacred for mortgage delinquents and not the elderly?

Or put it another way, forget about the elderly altogether. Since they’re in the CPOing mood to solve housing crisis, can anyone give me a good reason why the government should not CPO all the properties in long term mortgage arrears?

Because the properties in arrears are not vacant, so it wouldn’t add anything to the housing stock.

If there are spare rooms there is already incentive to rent them out via RAR scheme and use the tax free proceeds to pay the mortgage.

Seamus Coffey did a number of reports from district courts dealing with repossession cases and noted that a very large number of properties were in fact empty.

The scheme proposed by the OP kind of does in fact already exist. It is known as the mortgage-to-rent scheme. It is for people with low income and established housing need with arrears.

Basically the state buys the loan from the bank and the asset gets transferred to an approved housing body. The mortgage holder gets the arrears written off and gets to stay in the house forever paying a social rent, but relinquishes ownership.

To my eye this is a very neat solution. The problem is that the scheme has only been used in 300 or so cases in the last 5 years.

Three (non mutually exclusive) reasons for this:
-Irish banks are generally pretty useless organisations also maybe something something moral hazard
-Many houses are valuable, and even in positive equity
-Not many people actually fit the narrow definitions of the scheme, which are for owner-occupiers with obvious housing needs (ie, kids) and a permanently lowered income (disability, redundancy, etc) and no other assets