Duncan Lewis

Residential Property

Commercial Property

Repossession could happen swiftly rendering people homeless in the present economic meltdown a charity says

Date: (28 June 2012)    |    

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The homelessness charity Shelter has compiled figures which show that in 2011/12 Barking and Dagenham in London were having the worst rate of mortgage possession claims with 8.44 claims per 1,000 homes by the local authority compared to the national average of 3.5 claims per 1,000.
Many areas in the North West of London have taken the top ten list of England along with various other hotspots around the country where the rate is significantly higher than the average.
An interactive map shows the six worst areas are within the North East, the West Midlands, central England, East London and a 130 mile band stretching from Liverpool on the west coast, through Manchester to Hull on the east coast.
It more or less sums up the stark reality of these areas which have been seeing relatively high unemployment compared to the national average, and show faster rises in unemployment too.
Campbell Robb, chief executive of Shelter, said generally people think that repossession would never happen to them, but rising unemployment, rising living costs and high house prices mean that many people were living close to the edge already, and risk falling into a spiral of debt and repossession.
From being a homeowner to becoming homeless could happen very swiftly, with just one small trigger like a wage cut, a health problem or a job loss which could leave a family with no option to meet their mortgage payments.
Repossession was the worst thing to happen to a family with research showing people considering it worse than having to fight a child custody battle.
The major earning of any family goes for housing but the government was not giving same attention to the affordability of hosing as the monthly costs of other essentials such as food or energy bills.
He said those struggling with mortgage arrears should contact their mortgage provider to avoid repossession and seek advice from bodies such as Shelter.
Housing Minister Grant Shapps said that repossession levels were at its lowest since 2007 considering the record deficit the government inherited, by controlling the need for rapid interest rises which would have put pressure on hard working families.
He said that though the government was doing everything to tackle the situation of families losing their homes by funding councils and Homelessness Advisory Service to help struggling home owners with short term loans he urged that those struggling with their mortgage should seek early help so repossession would always be the last resort.