Lenders support FCA proposed extension of repossessions

Jake Carter

January 13, 2021

Mortgage lenders are in support of the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA) proposed extension on to the moratorium on repossessions to 1 April 2021, according to the BSA and UK Finance.

The extension would apply to both residential and buy-to-let mortgages.

The mortgage industry’s continued support for an extension on repossessions follows the government’s extension of the moratorium on private tenant evictions until 21 February 2021 in England.

Wales and Scotland have banned rental evictions until 31 March 2021.

The mortgage industry’s continued commitment to the possessions moratorium sits alongside payment deferrals and additional forbearance measures.

Under the extension, members of UK Finance and the Building Societies Association (BSA) have agreed not to seek, or enforce, a warrant for possession before 1 April 2021, unless there are exceptional circumstances such as a customer requesting proceedings to continue or when the property is in vacant measures.

This latest extension means the measures will have been in effect for 12 months by its end date.

Eric Leenders, managing director of personal finance at UK Finance, said: “The banking and finance industry is committed to providing ongoing support to those facing financial difficulty as a result of the pandemic.

“The industry is fully supportive of a moratorium on possessions remaining in place until 1 April 2021 to ensure customers do not lose their home at this difficult time.

“This is part of a package of support provided by lenders for those who need it, including payment deferrals and tailored assistance.

“It is vital that customers who are concerned about their finances go online or contact their lender to understand what options and support are available to them.”

Paul Broadhead, head of mortgage and housing policy at the Building Societies Association, added: “Mortgage lenders recognise the unique circumstances which are affecting some borrowers during the pandemic, a situation which can only be exacerbated by the current lockdown and the need for some businesses to temporarily close.

“Normal forbearance measures will continue to be in operation however long the pandemic persists, but we are also asking government to do their part, in the first instance by reducing the time that borrowers must wait for a support for mortgage interest loan from the current 39 weeks to 13 weeks, adding to the options available, particularly for those who were in financial difficulty before the pandemic.”

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