Ireland’s Guide To Money And Living

Consumer watch

Consumer watch

Getting back on track with debt

According to the Insolvency Service of Ireland (ISI), there has been a drop in the number of bankruptcies in the first three months of 2016 – falling from 162 in the same period last year to 111. There has, however, been continued growth of 26% in new applications for personal insolvency arrangements (PIAs), which help keep people in their homes.

Commenting on the latest statistics Lorcan O’Connor, Director of the ISI, said that “the 26% growth in PIA applications is likely due to the newly introduced Court Review process, sometimes referred to as the removal of the ‘bank veto’”.

Since the ISI began its work it has helped more than 3,000 people, dealing with total debt of around €5bn. O’Connor also encouraged those with serious debt problems to get in touch with a personal insolvency practitioner or an approved intermediary – details are available on www.backontrack.ie or by calling 076 106 4200.

More for your mortgage

In other news, The Irish Times reports that Ulster Bank is teaming up with One Big Switch to cut its four year fixed rate to 3.29%. According to Fiona Reddan, other features will include free property valuations and a contribution of €1,500 towards legal fees. To qualify, potential customers must have an outstanding mortgage with a loan to value of 60% or less.

The nation’s breakfast

Finally, a recent report conducted by Bord Bia’s Consumer Insights team has revealed Ireland’s favourite breakfast food, as well as changing consumer habits. Analysing consumer attitudes towards breakfast, the team found that bread/toast is the nation’s favourite mid-week breakfast, followed closely by porridge. Nine out of ten Irish people have breakfast every day, with the majority (87%) breakfasting at home rather than at the office.

The survey also noted that Irish consumers are increasingly looking for healthy alternatives in the morning. “People are looking for ‘permissible pleasures’ that make it easier for them to cut down on certain foods such as a healthier variant of their favourites such as turkey rashers instead of traditional pork rashers. We also found many parents in our breakfast club were concerned about the level of sugar and salt in their kids’ preferred cereals but were stuck between giving them what is best and what they will eat,” said Paula Donoghue, Bord Bia’s Consumer Insight Manager.

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When not writing about all things personal finance, You & Your Money's editor Conor Forrest enjoys reading, football and getting lost in an ocean of Wikipedia articles.
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