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David Hall: What New Beginning is doing has been an abysmal failure before

The mortgage debt advocate has slammed the planned mortgage-to-rent scheme.

Image: Sam Boal/Photocall Ireland

A FORMER DIRECTOR of New Beginning has said the scheme at the centre of a data breach at the organisation has been an ‘abysmal failure’ before.

David Hall left the organisation in July 2012 over differences with the commercial route being taken, and is now director of the Irish Mortgage Holders Association.

It was revealed yesterday by the Irish Mail on Sunday that New Beginning sent the personal details of 1,500 customers to an investment firm it was working with on a mortgage-to-rent scheme.

“Our idea was and is to allow homeowners whose mortgages are in default and who are at risk of repossession to surrender and then rent back their home,” a statement yesterday from the group read.

If their circumstances improved the homeowner has the right to buy back their property in the first seven years at a 40pc discount to any uplift since the agreement was entered into.

Co-founder Ross Maguire indicated that banks had expressed interest in the scheme, but said there was “no guarantee” of success.

However, speaking this morning to RTÉ’s Morning Ireland, Hall noted that a similar scheme was attempted following the Keane report.

“It has been an abysmal failure… they just can’t get it right, he said, adding that its failure to get off the ground ‘doesn’t bode well for any similar projects in future’.

As of June this year, just 40 houses have been purchased through the Government scheme since its launch in 2012.

Hall described the data breach at New Beginning as a “unmerciful mistake”, describing the two directors as ‘decent and honourable people’. He said that the reputation of similar organisations has been damaged by the incident, but believes trust can be rebuilt once the “right questions are asked” and organisations are open to scrutiny by the public.

The mortgage debt campaigner also said he is considering running in the next general election, but added that it’s too early to call as questions remain over issues such as the formation of new party.

Hall received a 13.1% share of first preference votes in the Dublin West by-election earlier this year.

Read: New Beginning ‘didn’t sell clients data… an email was sent by mistake’ >

The entire system is rubbish’: Just 40 houses bought through mortgage-to-rent scheme >

More: David Hall says blackmail scandal won’t put him off Dáil bid >

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Nicky Ryan

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