While the residential real estate industry is in crisis as house sales remain suspended due to the lockdown, the impact on banks' mortgage books is likely to emerge only in the months ahead.

The country's largest estate agency groups have been urging the government to open up the residential market. As it stands they can only take clients to houses when the country moves to level 2 lockdown restrictions, meaning it is almost impossible to sell properties. And if distressed homeowners looking to offload their houses can't do so, it will affect banks because these properties will remain on their books for a lot longer than they would like...

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