New figures from the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) show that 9,900 properties were repossessed in the UK during the first quarter of 2012, which is a slight increase on the previous quarter but is about the same as the corresponding quarter in 2011.
CML have deemed that the 10% increase of this quarter from the previous quarter is a normal seasonal variation. It has described the situation as stable and that it hopes to be able to review down its previous prediction for the 2012 of 45,000 repossessions. However the CML warned that “Continuing pressures on household finances, changes to welfare benefits and an upward drift in mortgage rates all have the potential to disrupt the current stable picture.”
Chief executive of SPF Private Clients, Mark Harris said that it is important that complacency doesn’t creep in. He said: “Lenders must continue to show forbearance and look after customers who are struggling by letting them switch to interest-only, take payment holidays or extend their mortgage terms.”
“Likewise, borrowers must seek help, even before they miss a payment if possible, speaking to their lender or one of the specialist – and free – debt agencies such as Citizens Advice Bureau.”
The figures in the report by the CML also shows that the number of people in arrears with their mortgages has fell slightly from 160,300 in the previous quarter to 157,800.