Mortgage repossession

18 May2009

If you`re worried about mortgage repossession, you`re not on your own. In 2009, the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) expects around 75,000 properties (representing around 0.66% of all mortgages) to be repossessed.

The good news is that there`s plenty of help available to help you avoid mortgage repossession - and `the system` is set up to keep you in your home. The Mortgage Pre-Action Protocol, for example, `describes the behaviour the court will normally expect of the parties prior to the start of a possession claim`.

The Protocol (available on The Council of Mortgage Lenders website) notes that `It is in the interests of the parties that mortgage payments or payments under home purchase plans are made promptly and that difficulties are resolved wherever possible without court proceedings`.

Mortgage repossession - who can help?

Your lender could help you

Your mortgage lender doesn`t want to repossess your home - they`d prefer you to stay in the property and keep making your mortgage payments. If you`re experiencing short-term financial problems and worried about mortgage repossession, they might agree to let you make reduced payments (or even take a mortgage payment holiday) until your finances improve.

The Government could help you

Just one example: Homeowners Mortgage Support (HMS) is there to help people who `suffer a temporary income shock` - eligible homeowners will be allowed to make smaller mortgage payments for up to two years, without the risk of losing their homes. As states: `lenders offering HMS will have the security of a Government guarantee if the borrower defaults`.

We could help you

Depending on your situation, we may be able to offer you a number of solutions to help you stay in your home. For example, we may be able to:

a) Reduce the cost of your mortgage payments. We may be able to help you find a new mortgage with lower monthly payments - by finding you a mortgage with a lower interest rate, for example, or by arranging to repay it over a longer time period.

b) Reduce the cost of servicing your unsecured debts. We may be able to negotiate with your unsecured lenders (credit cards, store cards, personal loans, etc.), asking them to accept lower monthly payments to make sure you have the money you need for your mortgage payments.

Please note that repaying any debt more slowly (whether it`s your mortgage or your unsecured debts) will delay the day you clear that debt and can cost you more in the long run, as it`ll accrue interest for longer.

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