The number of mortgages in arrears has fallen by almost 5% over the past three months, according to new figures from the Central Bank.

There are now 126,000 mortgages on principle dwellings in arrears, representing almost one in six outstanding home loans.

Of those, 90,343 were in arrears for 90 days or more by the end of June, a 3% decline on the previous quarter.

However the number of accounts in what the bank described as very long-term arrears - of 720 days or more - was up, with that category now representing almost 5% of all outstanding mortgages.

The outstanding balance on these loans stood at €8 billion by the end of June, or 7.5% of the balance on the country's entire principle dwelling mortgage book.

The Central Bank said almost 102,000 mortgages were classified as restructured by the end of June, with more than 81% of all restructured loans meeting their new terms.

Meanwhile, on the buy-to-let side, more than 39,600 mortgages were in arrears by the end of June, representing 27.5% of all such accounts.

This was up slightly on the number recorded in the three months to March, with more than 80% of those in arrears for 90 days or more.

The number of buy-to-let mortgages in very long-term arrears of 720 days or more was also higher, with 14,536 accounts - or 10% of the total stock - falling into this category by the end of June.

The Central Bank says legal proceedings were issued by lenders against over 3,000 homeowners during the second quarter of the year.

Of the 530 court cases involving mortgages secured on principal private dwellings, the courts granted orders for repossession of 296 properties.

A further 97 investment or "buy-to-let" properties were repossessed during the quarter.