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Home At Risk As Banks Seek More Security For Credit Card Debt

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Hundreds of thousands of indebted Britons are at risk of losing their homes if they fall behind on their credit card and personal loan repayments after moves by the high street banks to protect their weakening balance sheets.

The banks’ increasing concern about the risks of the implosion of Britain’s £1.4 trillion debt mountain has led to a huge surge in the number of court orders moving unsecured debt on to a basis that secures it against a borrower’s home.

Figures from the Courts Service indicate that the use of charging orders by British banks surged by 580 per cent from 2000 to 2006, the most recent year for which figures are available. Industry sources say that the banks’ increasing use of the tactic to safeguard loans that they view as risky has accelerated since the credit crunch began last summer.

Charging orders are sought by lenders through the courts when a borrower misses loan or credit card repayments. If a judge approves the applications, the debt becomes secured against the borrower’s home, to be repaid from the equity of its eventual sale. In extreme cases, lenders who have obtained a charging order apply to the courts to force the sale of the home.

Historically, charging orders were used only as a last resort, but solicitors have confirmed that there has been a surge in interest in charging orders. One nationwide law firm that requested anonymity said that it applied for double the number of charging orders in 2007 compared with 2006 for clients that included high street banks.

Michael Green, a partner in Weightmans, another firm of solicitors that specialises in debt recovery, believes that lenders are increasingly “twitchy” about bad debt. He said: “If people default on credit card payments or loans, then banks now want more security.” In 2000 there were 16,014 applications, rising to 92,933 applications in 2006. These have included applications from almost all the high street lenders, including HSBC, Alliance & Leicester, Nationwide and NatWest.

Experts fear that overburdened consumers are struggling to cope with the combination of debt obligations and the rising cost of living. Borrowers in Britain owe £225 billion on credit cards and personal loans and spend 10 per cent of their income on interest payments.

Chris Tapp, of Credit Action, the debt charity, said that banks have become less willing to write off debt via insolvency agreements, which explained the huge rise in charging orders.

He said: “The slight fall in insolvencies recently could be linked to a policy by banks to chase debts by whatever means are available, including the courts, rather than simply allowing a debt to be written off.”

Mr Tapp noted that, as mortgage lenders, most banks and building societies will also be aware of the huge rise in equity tied up in borrowers’ homes.

Some homeowners who remortgage after fixed-rate deals end have found that surveyors are reducing the value of their properties, leaving them unable to take out larger loans.

Eric Leenders, of the British Bankers’ Association, blamed smaller lenders for the increasing use of charging orders in recent years. He said: “This is a potential consequence of the redistribution of unsecured lending. Five years ago most lenders came from the banking industry, now just two thirds.”

http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/busi...icle3599523.ece

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Guest Bart of Darkness
Hundreds of thousands of indebted Britons are at risk of losing their homes if they fall behind on their credit card and personal loan repayments

Is repossession still a touchy subject with the banks or are they getting more worried about their cash than their reputations?

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Some homeowners who remortgage after fixed-rate deals end have found that surveyors are reducing the value of their properties, leaving them unable to take out larger loans.

Eric Leenders, of the British Bankers’ Association, blamed smaller lenders for the increasing use of charging orders in recent years. He said: “This is a potential consequence of the redistribution of unsecured lending. Five years ago most lenders came from the banking industry, now just two thirds.”

http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/busi...icle3599523.ece

That will be the smoking gun after this melt down, there clearly is no such thing as Un-secured lending and the sheeple need a big 'WAKE UP' call on this!

No point paying higher rates for un-secured lending if they will charge you over the odds and take you home anyway, only reason for un-secured lending is if you don't have any equity. Any FA's have advice on this? was it criminal to not point out in dirty great big clearly understood words?

Failure to pay you un-secured debt may result in losing your home?

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  • 293 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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