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Mortgage arrears and repossessions fall to all-time low

Written by: Christina Hoghton
The vast majority of borrowers are meeting their monthly repayments, but the recent rate rise could mean more start to struggle.

Arrears and possessions are at an all-time historic low since the data first started being collected over 24 years ago, according to UK Finance.

The trade body’s latest Mortgage Arrears and Possessions Update for the second quarter of 2018 revealed there were 76,740 homeowner mortgages in minor arrears of 2.5% or more of the outstanding balance in the second quarter of 2018, 8% fewer than in the same quarter of the previous year.

Within the total, there were 23,190 homeowner mortgages with serious arrears representing 10% or more of the outstanding balance. This was 4% fewer than last year.

Fewer repossessions

Repossessions were also down. In total 1,060 homeowner mortgaged properties were taken into possession in the second quarter of 2018, 5% fewer than in the same quarter of the previous year, and 520 buy-to-let mortgaged properties were taken into possession, 24% fewer than last year.

Jackie Bennett, director of mortgages at UK Finance, said: “While this is positive, last week’s base rate rise could see arrears creeping up in the coming months.

“With well over 90% of new loans taken out at fixed rates, most recent borrowers will see no immediate impact from the Bank rate increase. However, anyone with concerns about managing their mortgage should contact their lender to discuss the advice and support available. Repossession is always a last resort.”

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