House repossessions could increase in 2012

The number of property repossessions could rise in 2012, new figures from the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) suggests.
In the lenders forecast for 2012, the CML believes that a staggering 45,000   homes will be repossessed next year.
This figure is an increase on the estimated 37,000 repossessions that will take place this year. However, the prediction is still lower than that of 2009 and far lower than during the downturn of the 1990s.
Despite further CML statistics showing that mortgage repayments are the most affordable for 8 years, as a result of persistently low interest rates, many still face repossession. This illustrates the seriousness of the financial pressure UK households face.
“The weak state of the wider economy and household finances creates a challenging and highly uncertain backdrop for the housing and mortgage markets,î said CML chief economist Bob Pannell.
ìDespite the fact that activity levels have already been subdued for several years, we have pencilled in a broadly flat picture – for both mortgage lending and property transactions – at least until real incomes show signs of stabilising as inflationary pressures recede.î
As economic doom and gloom settles over Europe with the potential to cause further damage to the already weak British economy, the CML believes this will have a negative impact on the housing market. The lenders estimate that just 825,000 homes will be sold in the UK over the next 12 months marking the lowest levels since records began in 1978.
They also predict that property sales and mortgage lending are also likely to fall in 2012.
Debt charity Credit Action revealed that a property was repossessed every 14.28 minutes in the three months to the end of October.
101 properties were repossessed everyday during the third quarter of 2011, according to the charityís December debt statistics.  This figure has been increasing all year and shows little sign of slowing down.
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