UK Finance: Mortgage arrears remain low as payment holidays come to an end
Mortgage arrears remain close to historically low levels due to the mitigating effects of payment deferrals and other tailored forbearance, according to the latest figures from UK Finance.
Q2 saw 26,560 homeowner mortgages in early arrears (those between 2.5% and 5% of balance in arrears), down 5% on Q1.
Some 27,910 homeowner mortgages had more significant arrears (10% or more of the outstanding balance), an increase of 630 on the previous quarter.
210 homeowner mortgaged properties and 230 buy-to-let mortgaged properties were taken into possession in the second quarter of 2021.
Steve Seal, chief executive of Bluestone Mortgages, said: “While it’s encouraging to see mortgage arrears remain close to historic lows, the picture could look very different in the coming months. Mortgage payment holidays have now come to an end, and with furlough and the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme set to end in September, there’s likely to be more homeowners who will struggle to keep up with mortgage repayments.
“This may only be short-term for some borrowers, however it is something that could impact their credit profile in the long-run. As a result, many of these customers risk being turned away from highstreet lenders and may not know where else to turn. This is where the specialist lending market has an increasingly important role to play.
“As an industry, it is our responsibility to support this cohort of customers which is only set to grow post-pandemic, signposting them to the options available and highlighting how the specialist market can cater to their unique needs.”