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Debt and Credit

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Mortgage on the Household’s Main Residence (HMR)

Just over one in four households (26.1%) have a mortgage on the HMR and there is a wide variability by age of the reference person. For example, only 2.2% of all households where the reference person is aged 65 or older have a mortgage on the HMR compared to 45.5% of households where the reference person is between 35 and 44 (See Table 4.1).  The likelihood of having a mortgage rises with household income, (going from 5.9% for the bottom fifth of income distribution to 52.1% for the top fifth).

Show Table: Table 4.1 Participation in debt by demographic and household characteristics

The median value of the outstanding balance of the mortgage on the HMR is €124,900, but varies from €152,000 in the Eastern & Midlands region to €100,000 in the Northern region (see Table 4.2).

Show Table: Table 4.2 Median values of debt by demographic and household characteristics

Mortgage on Other Real Estate Property

While overall 7.3% of households have a mortgage on other property, this rises to  22.6% of households with the top fifth of household income (see Table 4.1).

Non-mortgage Loans

The percentage of households with non-mortgage loans is 30.4% but one adult households with children have a much higher rate of 45.4% (see Table 4.1).  

Credit Card Debt

Some 12.7% of all households have credit card debt but this goes up to 21.0% for households with two adults and one to three children under 18 (see Table 4.1).

Total Debt

Households with children have the highest rates of debt. Only 13.9% of one adult households aged 65 or over have debt in contrast to 72.8% of households with two adults and one to three children under 18 (see Figure 4.1).

Percentage of households with any debt
Other households with children aged under 1874.3
2 adults with 1-3 children aged under 1872.8
1 adult with children aged under 1861.5
2 adults, both aged <6558.5
3 or more adults54.1
1 adult aged <6550.9
2 adults, at least 1 aged 65+22.5
1 adult aged 65+13.9
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The credit-constrained rate fell from 14.7% in 2013 to 8% In 2018 and dropped in all household types over this period. In two adult households where both adults are less than 65 the rate dropped from 14.8% to 8.3% over this period.

Focusing on single adult households with children, just over four in ten (42.2%) applied for credit in the 3-year period preceding their interview date and over a quarter (27.6%) of these households were either refused or didn’t get the full amount requested. Just over  one out of every five (20.7%) single adult households with children considered applying for a loan at some time in the 3-year period but then decided not to, thinking that the application would be rejected (see Figure 4.2 and Table 4.3).

20182013
1 adult with children aged under 1822.732.48
Other households with children aged under 189.119.28
2 adults with 1-3 children aged under 1810.219.8
1 adult aged <6510.116.02
2 adults, both aged <658.314.78
3 or more adults6.211.36
2 adults, at least 1 aged 65+2.43.01
1 adult aged 65+2.12.5
Show Table: Table 4.3 Credit constraints by demographic and household characteristics

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