The Director of the Insolvency Service of Ireland has said much work is still to be done to help 25,000 people whose mortgages are in long-term arrears.

Speaking on RTÉ's News at One, Lorcan O'Connor said there has been strong growth in the uptake of personal insolvency arrangements, that is, solutions specifically designed for people in mortgage difficulty, but the agency wants to continue to encourage people in difficulty to seek help.

He said 90% of people who avail of personal insolvency arrangements get to keep their home.

Mr O'Connor said the Government's Abhaile scheme, which allows free consultations with personal insolvency practitioners, has been significant in terms of engagement with personal insolvency practitioners.

He said that the court's ability to impose arrangements, which a bank has voted against, is also adding to the uptake of personal insolvency arrangements.

Mr O'Connor said a challenge remains to encourage as many people as possible in difficulty to avail of personal insolvency solutions.