If you are an ordinary John and Mary looking to buy a house from NAMA, then you might have thought that the only financing option available from NAMA was its much-vaunted 80:20 Deferred Payment Initiative or “negative mortgage” as most of us call it, the financing product launched by NAMA in May 2012. But a fortnight ago, in what looks like a highly Jesuitical response, NAMA confirmed that it would examine “deferred payment” for residences on a “case by case basis”. This led to the blogpost on here saying that NAMA was offering “bespoke financing” for Irish homes.
Yesterday, in the Dail in a response to a question from the Sinn Fein finance spokesperson Pearse Doherty, Minister for Finance Michael Noonan confirmed that NAMA had done “a few” of these bespoke deals, but he declined to provide any further details. This is the full exchange (with emphasis added)
“Deputy Pearse Doherty: further to Parliamentary Question Number 60 of 13 June 2012, if he will advise in relation to residential property, and apart from the National Assets Management Agency 80:20 Deferred Payment Initiative, the total value of deferred payments sanctioned by NAMA; the maximum length of time for which payment is deferred and the average interest rate charged on deferred payments..
Minister for Finance, Michael Noonan: NAMA has advised me that the information sought by the Deputy is commercially sensitive me but also that the instances are few where NAMA has provided this facility. Disclosure of the information would undermine NAMA’s future negotiation position in respect of the disposal of residential properties under the control of its debtors and receivers and could thereby reduce the realised proceeds for the Irish taxpayer from such sales. Full details of NAMA’s 80:20 Deferred Payment Initiative are available on the Agency’s website, http://www.nama.ie”
So how do you get access to these bespoke financing deals for Irish homes from NAMA? Obviously, the Minister isn’t providing information, so the following is merely my imagining:
When you first meet the NAMA agent and shake hands, hold onto the agent’s hands and with you middle finger, tap their wrist three times, whilst at the same time rubbing your nose from top to bottom with the pinky on your left hand, and utter these three words : “Billion Dollar Baby”, BUT, and this is critically important, instead of pronouncing “billion” in the usual way : bill-yon, adopt the style favoured by the NAMA CEO, Brendan McDonagh and pronounce it bill-en. You might need to raise your left foot at least five centimetres off the ground also.
Perhaps as ridiculous as an Agency set up with €30bn of our money selling Irish homes in a new and hitherto secret manner, where part of the purchase price is deferred, but on what terms, who knows. The Minister is not even confirming the total value of these bespoke deals undertaken to date.
On a more serious note, one of the homes that has apparently been sold with this bespoke financing was sold for several million euro and 20% of the purchase price was deferred for several years. But who knows what secret deal NAMA might give you if you ask in the right way.