Alarming increase in mortgage repossessions

There’s been an alarming increase in mortgage repossession claims at Winchester Crown Court.

The Ministry of Justice published figures on August 15, 2008 showing that the number of mortgage possession claims between January and June 2008 at Winchester Crown Court were 68% higher than a year earlier. Possession orders were 15% higher.

The 60% year-on-year growth in mortgage repossession orders from April-June at Winchester Crown Court is the 8th highest increase in the country.

It’s an extremely worrying trend. We look set to see the highest level of repossessions at Winchester Crown Court for at least 10 years.

In essence, thousands of families around the country are now paying the price for the Government letting the economy – and banking regulation – get hopelessly out of control. With rising mortgage repayments as fixed interest deals expire and aren’t replaced – and sky high food and fuel costs, more and more people’s budgets are being driven to breaking point.

There is a lot of helpful advice available to people in financial difficulty – for example from the Citizens’ Advice Bureau – but it’s also clear that we need a change in the rules. If we are to avoid the mass repossessions of the 1990s, we need the Government to enforce a statutory code of practice which ensures that lenders only ever repossess as a last resort. This should not just apply to the big banks but also to the large number of secondary lenders who are using court action to pursue their debts in a very aggressive way.

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3 Responses to Alarming increase in mortgage repossessions

  1. What are the absolute figures and where do they rank in the UK?

  2. Martin says:

    The absolute figures are relatively low – 54 repossession orders in the first half of the year (although that’s no reassurance for any of the 54 households affected) – which is the lowest figure in the South West region. The absolute increase compared to last year ranks 20th of the 26 courts in the South West region.

    I don’t have the national rankings (since the detailed figures are in a PDF and irritatingly difficult to extract). The Daily Mail published the original listing of the April-June results (which gave 8th place to Winchester) on August 16th.

    It’s also not clear how the cases are allocated between courts – which is why I looked at the percentage increase to understand the trend.

    Across the South West region as a whole, the increase in repossession orders was 14% and across the UK it was 17%.

    The biggest absolute numbers are, unsurprisingly, in the major cities – with Portsmouth showing the highest level of repossession orders (846) and highest absolute increase (123) in the Hampshire area.

  3. That’s interesting – thanks for that πŸ™‚

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