Bank of Ireland looks to sell more UK mortgage portfolios

Bank of Ireland is looking to offload two of its UK mortgage portfolios worth nearly £2bn, Money Marketing understands.

The books are thought to be a £1.4bn residential book and a £500m book made up solely of buy-to-let loans. It is understood that the bidding process closed in mid-January.

BoI stopped lending in January 2009 and said it was looking to “significantly” deleverage its UK mortgage book.

Last October, Ireland’s finance department told the country’s three remaining banks they had to shed almost half their non-core assets.

BoI had around £27bn-worth of UK mortgage assets as at June 30, 2011. In October, Nationwide Building Society bought a £1.1bn chunk of BoI’s UK mortgage assets, which saw 16,000 of its customers transfer to Nationwide subsidiary The Mortgage Works at the start of December.

Advisers urged borrowers on BoI’s standard variable rate of 2.99 per cent to consider remortgaging with another lender after Nationwide said it will raise the rate in line with its own SVR of 4.79 per cent after March.

BoI refused to comment.

London & Country associate director of communications David Hollingworth says: “It is well known that the Bank of Ireland is looking to deleverage and I think there will be significant interest in these books as the assets will be high quality.”