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UK property debt burden revealed

The share of households in Great Britain who thought making their mortgage payments was “a heavy burden” fell during the recession, from 15.2% in 2006/08 to 13.6% in 2008/10, according to new figures released by ONS.

In 2008/10, the share of households who felt making payments was “a heavy burden” fell in all regions except Wales (up from 12.1% to 13.5%) and the North East (up from 10.6% to 15.6%). More households in the South West with property liabilities reported these “a heavy burden” than any other region (16.5%). Scotland contained the fewest households considering their property debt to be ‘a heavy burden’ (8.2%).

For those households with property debt on their main residence, the median size of a mortgage rose in cash terms between 2006/08 and 2008/10, from £70,000 to £75,000. In 2008/10, median property debt was highest in London (£128,000) and lowest in Scotland (£55,000).

In the least wealthy fifth of households only 8.0% owned their main residence, with 7.8% having a mortgage. However, in the most wealthy fifth of households, 96.8% of households owned their main residence, with 40.4% having a mortgage. Wales had the highest share of households owning their main residence outright (37.0%), with London (22.6%) having the lowest.

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