Mortgage Assistance

If you are experiencing difficulties with your mortgage, please contact your lender and/or a debt advice service in the first instance and ensure that everything is being done to manage the mortgage repayments.

The National Homelessness Advice Service has recently published a leaflet for people who may be worried about keeping up with their mortgage repayments; you can see a copy of this leaflet here.

Debt Advice Services such as the Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) will help you to ensure that you have done everything possible to retrieve the situation and they can also determine whether a mortgage rescue package is appropriate and affordable.

You may find it useful to review your finances, the National Debtline have produced a personal budget sheet which you can use to keep track of your income, expenditure and debts. You can download a copy of the spreadsheet here.

The Government recently announced a range of measures to assist homeowners avoid repossession in the current economic climate as follows:

Mortgage Rescue Scheme (MRS)

Where all options to retrieve your mortgage have been exhausted by both your lender and a money advice agency, the money advice agency may determine that a MRS is suitable. If so, the local authority needs to determine whether the household is eligible for the scheme and if so a referral can be made to a Housing Association.

Depending on individual circumstances, there are two possible options for those that are eligible:

Shared Equity

Those who have equity share in their homes and are facing a payment shock from re-mortgaging and/or higher living costs but likely to retain current income.

In this scheme, the Housing Association provides an equity loan enabling the householders' mortgage repayments to be reduced.

Government Mortgage to Rent

Those who are unable to meet lenders’ requirements e.g. those on unstable
incomes. Those who are more suited to social tenancies.

In this scheme, the Housing Association clears the secured debt completely and the applicant pays rent to the Housing Association at a level they can afford.

You may also be able to speak to your lender about:

Homeowners Mortgage Support Scheme

The scheme will enable homeowners suffering from a temporary income shock and who have demonstrated to lenders their willingness to pay, time to get back on their feet financially so they can remain in their homes.

In this scheme, Lenders can freeze interest payments on the mortgage for up to two years. Speak to your lender to find out if they are taking part in this scheme.

Support for Mortgage Interest

The Government has also reduced the eligibility period from 39 weeks to 13 weeks for households who claim Income Support or Income based Job Seekers Allowance and wish to apply for the Mortgage Interest Support Scheme details of which can be obtained from the Benefits Agency.

Page last updated on: 06/09/2010