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October 23, 2012

A quarter of mortgage borrowers in fear of repossession

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by Gill Montia

A quarter of mortgage borrowers in fear of repossession

Over a quarter (26%) of homeowners with mortgages are afraid they could be repossessed, according to the latest Quarterly Consumer Report from Which?

The research also suggests that many people in the 30 to 49 age group are trapped in their current mortgage deals, and will be unable to switch as rates increase.

Alongside this, home ownership is increasingly out of reach for first-time buyers, with rising rents making it harder for people to save for the large deposits needed.

More than half (54%) of people questioned aged under 30 who don’t own a home were worried about getting on the property ladder.

The consumer group also calls to account lenders who have increased mortgage arrangement fees, which have risen by around 60% in the past eighteen months to an average of £1,472 in August 2012.

Which? executive director, Richard Lloyd, comments: “The housing market is failing not just one but two generations of consumers, with many mortgage prisoners trapped on their current deal and young people excluded from the housing market altogether.”

In summary, Which? is calling for:

The Government to put in place clearer rules for the Funding for Lending Scheme to ensure that banks and building societies pass on this cheap finance to mortgage prisoners and first time buyers.

The Government to publish its expectations for the scheme, and what safeguards are put in place to ensure that banks pass on cheap funding to consumers.

Greater transparency from the banks which should publish details of their mortgage lending using the Funding for Lending Scheme.

Banks to stop increasing arrangement fees.


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