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Property Buyers - Code of Practice

Top 20 Mortgage Possession Hotspots in England and Wales

The November 2019 release by the Ministry of Justice shows all mortgage possession actions in county courts increased in 2019.

According to the repossession statistics, in 2019, mortgage possession claims increased by 42% while orders for possession rose by 35%.

Warrants issued and repossessions also increased by 31% and 29% respectively, compared to the same quarter in 2018.

Sellhousefast.uk, who have offered advice on preventing house repossession in the past, investigated this to determine the local authorities in England and Wales most at risk.

Please note: analysis covers the July to September quarter in 2019 only.  

Key Findings

In the July to September quarter, Sellhousefast.uk identified Blackpool as the most affected area in England and Wales. The seaside resort holds 82.7 (83) mortgage possession claims per 100,000 households.

Followed by Slough, 20 miles west of central London – at 59.6 (60) and Thurrock in the east – at 56.7 (57.)

Closing the top twenty, but still rich in risk, are local authorities: Sandwell (45.6), Middlesbrough (45.6) and Luton in the south east (43.9.)

Alternately, Sellhousefast.uk identified the three local authorities with the fewest mortgage possession claims as: Broadland (5.3 per 100,000 households), Woking (4.8) and Maldon at 3.6.

As per the repossession statistics, Isles of Scilly had no mortgage possession claims in this period.

For a 2018-2019 comparison of UK repossession statistics, specifically mortgage possession claims, please see below:

Local Authority Mortgage Possession Claims 2018 (Per 100,000 Households) Mortgage Possession Claims 2019 (Per 100,000 Households) % Difference
Blackpool 42.1 82.7 96.4
Slough UA 28.4 59.6 109.8
Thurrock 45.6 56.7 24.3
Christchurch 4.4 53.8 1122.7*
Barking and Dagenham 33.6 53.7 59.8
Croydon 32.6 53.4 63.8
Nuneaton and Bedworth 23.6 50.5 113.9
Stockton-on-Tees UA 28.8 50.1 73.9
Tameside 34.4 49.2 43
Hyndburn 43.3 49 13.1
Oldham 40.1 48.2 20.1
Bridgend 34.1 47.2 38.4
Bradford 33.9 47 38.6
Knowsley 37.7 47 24.6
Sunderland 25 46.6 86.4
Redcar and Cleveland 42.8 45.9 7.2
Epping Forest 16 45.7 185.6
Sandwell 28.4 45.6 60.5
Middlesbrough 57.7 45.6 -20.9
Luton 20.4 43.9 115.1

*Please note: anomaly is the result of three areas coming together. 

Mortgage Arrears

According to leading debt charity, StepChange mortgage arrears is – jointly with electricity bills and secured loans – a cause of concern for 18% of  households* across the UK. Typically, the average arrears amount, relative to mortgage, is a total of £3,005.

*This percentage signifying the number of StepChange clients who have this type of expenditure who are in arrears.

Image credit: Shutter_M/Shutterstock

Priority Debts: What Can I Do?

If you find you are struggling with priority debts and fear falling behind – don’t panic.

Try the following steps:

  1. Talk to your mortgage provider to see if they can offer you a lower payment on your mortgage. You may also be able to switch to an interest-only mortgage for a short period of time.
  2. Use an OFGEM-approved utility price comparison tool, to see if you can get a better deal on your gas, electric or fuel costs.
  3. Speak to your local council to find out if your property is in the correct council tax band.

It is also recommended you look at your budget to understand what your spending looks like monthly. Help can be found at StepChange via their helpline or the anonymous advice tool Debt Remedy.

Image credit: Africa Studio/Shutterstock

Feature Image credit: Billion Photos/Shutterstock

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