Nearly 10,000 homes repossessed in first three months of 2012

 

A total of 9,600 homes were repossessed in the first three months of 2012, the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) said today.

This was identical to the same period of 2011, but up ten per cent on the previous quarter. The CML described the situation as “stable”, and suggested it might lower its forecast for the year as a whole in the summer.

It had predicted that repossessions would reach 45,000 in 2012.

But housing charities warned that rising mortgage rates could see repossessions rise. More than a million homeowners saw their mortgage rates rise earlier this month following a string of increases announced by lenders, blaming the weak economy and the increased cost of funding a mortgage.

Campbell Robb, chief executive of Shelter, said: “With many lenders raising interest rates, hundreds of thousands of struggling homeowners will be worrying how they will cope with an increase in mortgage costs.”

He added: “Sadly, recent changes to Support for Mortgage Interest mean that families who face repossession will find there is less support available for them.

“We're really concerned that government policy to cut the safety net for homeowners at a time of increasing unemployment will inevitably lead to more households facing the devastation of losing their home.”

The CML report also highlighted a “modest improvement” in mortgage arrears. The number of mortgages with arrears of 2.5 per cent or more of the outstanding balance fell to 157,800, down from 160,300 at the end of December and 170,500 a year ago.

Despite the general improvement in the arrears figures, there are 28,000 loans with arrears of 10 per cent or more, the highest number since June 2000 and 300 higher than a year ago.

Meanwhile, new research from the TUC union showed that the cost of living has been rising more quickly for the poorest households as a result of higher energy and food bills.

The TUC said CPI inflation for the poorest tenth of households in February was 4.1 per cent, compared to 3.3 per cent for the richest 10 per cent.

Poorer families have been hit by higher inflation over the past year because they spend a larger proportion of their income on food and utilities, said the union group.

TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said: “People have been getting poorer every month for the last two years as high inflation, tax rises and the dire state of the economy take their toll on family budgets.

“Over the last year the poorest households have suffered more than anyone else from rising food prices and soaring gas and electricity bills. The Chancellor's obsession with raising VAT, along with swingeing cuts to tax credits, has made life even tougher for those on low to medium incomes.

“Consumer spending plays a crucial role in driving our economy so it's in all our interests for people to start getting decent pay rises. But the government policy of confidence shattering austerity is having the opposite effect.”

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Senior Web Designer / Front End Developer

£28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast expanding web managem...

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey / South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey/ South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Ashdown Group: Recruitment Consultant / Account Manager - Surrey / SW London

£40000 per annum + realistic targets: Ashdown Group: A thriving recruitment co...

Day In a Page

No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor