Spain has passed a decree to protect homeowners threatened with eviction.
The government there is to suspend evictions for 2 years for certain homeowners in mortgage arrears including those with children and the long-term unemployed.
It has also pledged to increase the amount of social housing available at low rents.
The emergency measures come in response to a number of recent suicides by people evicted from their homes.
Spanish banks have repossessed 400,000 properties since 2008 although not all of them are residential.
But the trend is increasing with 50,000 repossessions in the first half of the year compared with 77,000 for the whole of 2011.
Last Friday of 53-year-old Amaia Egana jumped from her 4th-floor flat in the nothern Basque Country as bailiffs came to evict her.
Her death pushed the issue to the top of the political agenda.
However new measure will only apply to families with household income of less than €19,200 a year.
Residential mortgages in Spain classified as doubtful at the end of June stood at 3% of the total.
In contrast 11% of residential mortgages in Ireland were in default at end-June.