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Repossessions Down As Homeowner Protection Pays Off

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The number of mortgage repossession claims issued in the courts fell from 23,705 to 20,061 - or 15% - in the last three months of 2009 compared to the previous quarter.  This number is also 26% lower than during the same period in 2008.

Why has the number fallen?

Low interest rates and increased support for struggling borrowers have helped.  The Bank of England interest rate is now 0.5%, while in early October 2008 it stood at 5%.

And since the introduction of the Mortgage Pre-Action Protocol in November 2008 lenders can not apply for a repossession order unless there really is no other alternative.  The Protocol forces lenders to consider arrangements to help those in arrears get back on track.

Courts Minister Bridget Prentice says:

"The mortgage industry and the government have worked hard to minimise the threat of repossession to people struggling with debt.

"The Mortgage Pre-Action Protocol makes clear that lenders should exhaust all alternatives before considering court action, while advice desks within courts provide information on other options available to both lenders and borrowers.

"And we want to do even more.  We have just published a consultation seeking views on ."

What help is available?

Homeowners facing mortgage repayment problems can seek help from a number of sources.  These include:

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