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Homeowners remain vulnerable to arrears and repossessions

In one his first tasks since taking up the role new Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Eric Pickles, will be asking the new Housing Minister Grant Shapps to take a fresh look at existing Government schemes which help homeowners struggling to pay their mortgage and make sure that they offer the best deal for homeowners, as well as value for money for the taxpayer.

Nick Hopkinson, Director of Property Portfolio Rescue said:
“It is obviously good news for those at risk that the number of repossessions has dropped slightly in the last quarter according to the latest data. However, the number of struggling households in serious debt with substantial mortgage arrears remains historically high despite the lowest interest rates ever remaining in place for over a year now.

“Unemployment is still growing, average incomes remain under pressure and anyone managing a household budget will tell you that their ‘real’ cost of living and personal inflation is creeping up ominously already this year. Combined with the tax rises and public spending cuts that will follow the emergency budget next month, many of those in deep arrears may well be tipped over the edge into repossession.

“Any increase in interest rates to ward off further inflation will only make the situation much worse for many thousands of other mortgage payers who are currently hanging on to their homes in these unstable economic times. I therefore fear we will see repossessions increase again soon.”

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