The charity’s chief executive Joanna Elson met with Chief Secretary to the Treasury Yvette Cooper, Economic Secretary to the Treasury Kitty Ussher and Housing Minister Caroline Flint today after the Government announced a £10m package to assist borrowers facing financial difficulty.
Elson proposed the Government review the qualifying conditions for state supported mortgage payments, the feasibility of creating a national mortgage rescue scheme and the implementation of the early protocol on repossession action, drafted by the Civil Justice Council.
Elson says: “At National Debtline we saw a 35 per cent increase in enquiries from callers with mortgage arrears in January 2008 compared with January last year. The increase suggests homeowners are feeling the effects of the credit crunch and of the three interest rate rises during last year. It is imperative during these difficult times that the Government, the banking industry and the advice sector work in partnership to minimise the number of homeowners getting into serious difficulty and keep people in their own homes wherever possible”.
Money Advice Trust and the Council of Mortgage Lenders have produced a leaflet to offer early advice for the estimated 1.4 million homeowners due to come off their fixed rate mortgage deals this year.