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Arrears up one third, says FSA

Annual mortgage arrears were up a third in the first quarter of 2009, according to the FSA.

Its quarterly mortgage figures have revealed that while new arrears cases fell in Q1 2009 by 12 per cent to 60,000 cases, year-on-year overall arrears figures were up 33 per cent, from 377,000 in Q1 2008 to 399,000 in Q1 2009.

The FSA says the proportion of the residential loan book that is in arrears rose to 3.64 per cent at end Q1, up 0.27 per cent in the quarter and up 1.23 per cent on 2008 figures.

Its latest survey found that the total value of outstanding loans is now just under £1.2 trillion, an increase of only 2 per cent compared to 2008. But quarterly growth has stalled, with a fall of 0.2 per cent, or £2bn in Q1 resulting in almost zero growth over the last two quarters.

New lending peaked in Q3 2007 at £102bn before progressively declining to £33bn in Q1, leaving gross lending 27 per cent lower in the quarter, and 56 per cent lower than a year earlier.

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