As the European Central Bank is set to raise interest rates this summer, is now the time to consider fixing your tracker or variable mortgage interest rate?
Daragh Cassidy, Head of Communications at Bonkers.ie, said for most people the answer is yes.
Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, he said there is some good value "by Irish standards" at least, with 10, 15, 20-year fixed rates which may not be around in a few months time.
"Fixing for such a long period can give you peace of mind for the next decade or so, that whatever happens globally, your mortgage repayments won't change. That certainty is going to be worth a lot to people."
We need your consent to load this rte-player contentWe use rte-player to manage extra content that can set cookies on your device and collect data about your activity. Please review their details and accept them to load the content.Manage Preferences
Tracker rates are linked to the ECB rate so when the ECB rate rises, so too will tracker rates.
"If you have a tracker mortgage and you are paying 1% margin, you'll probably be better off remaining with the tracker for now, because when the ECB starts raising rates it's unlikely to be by very much - maybe 1 to 2% over the next two years, so if you have a tracker you'd still only be paying 2 to 3%."
It means that if someone, for example, has €200,000 on their mortgage over 20 years, if the ECB hikes rates by 0.5%, mortgage holders face an additional €45 per month. If the ECB hikes rates by 1%, its double that.
"It's not a huge sum of money initially, but the question is how far will the ECB continue to increase the rates? How far will it go?" he said.
Mr Cassidy advises people to go to a mortgage broker and get good professional advice if they are considering fixing their mortgage interest rate.
"There are potentially breakage fees if you want to get out of a fixed rate early, so fixing might not suit everyone, but it does look like it's going to be the right option for most people."