Big rise in buy-to-let mortgages in serious arrears

The number of buy-to-let mortgages with arrears of over 10 per cent of the outstanding balance have jumped by 20 per cent.

This is according to new figures from UK Finance, which found that there were 1,200 such mortgages in the final quarter of 2017.

Meanwhile there were 5,100 buy-to-let mortgages in arrears of 2.5 per cent or more, an increase of two per cent on the previous year.

Possession warrants on the rise

The UK Finance figures suggest that 600 buy-to-let properties were repossessed during the quarter, a figure that’s unchanged from the same quarter a year previously.

But separate data from the Ministry of Justice indicates that possession warrants for buy-to-let properties increased by nine per cent over the year.

Homeowner mortgages stable

The picture was more positive for owner-occupier mortgages, with the number of loans in arrears of 2.5 per cent or more falling by seven per cent – a total of 82,800.

Of those, 24,700 loans were in arrears of more than 10 per cent of the outstanding balance.

Homeowner possessions low

Commenting on the UK Finance report, the organisation’s Paul Smee said: “Annual homeowner possessions currently stand at a 36-year low, with overall arrears and possessions continuing to decline.

“All potential borrowers are carefully assessed against their ability to pay back their loans, and lenders work closely with customers to ensure that any payment issues are dealt with at an early stage.”

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