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Warning over rise in home repossessions

6 August, 2007

Sinn Féin Housing spokesperson, Fra McCann MLA has described the figures just released on the number of home repossessions by the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) as very worrying.

Councillor McCann said

"There are very serious concerns about the number of people facing difficulties with their home mortgage repayments, particularly given the spiraling level of homelessness. The figures just released by the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) have now confirmed those fears.

"The CML found that the number of repossessed properties now stands at 14,000, a 30% rise in repossessions in the first half of the year compared with the same period in 2006. Mortgage arrears have also risen, with those in arrears of three months or more up 4% since December 2006.

"Cleary many people are finding it difficult to meet their mortgage repayments with ever changing economic circumstances. Interest rates are now at their highest for a very long time. In many cases people are finding that any rise in interest rates, fuel prices, or the weekly household budget can cause them huge difficulties and push many people over the financial edge.

"Mortgage providers need to look at the criteria they are using to authorise loans. We can't have a situation where people are being given mortgages for amounts of money that they simply cannot afford, with any small unplanned change in their income causing them serious financial problems and leaving them in danger of losing their homes at any given time." ENDS

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