Lib Dems warn of rising risk of repossession

MPs warn 60,000 at risk of repossession

MPs warn 60,000 at risk of repossession

As many as 60,000 families face the risk of repossession during 2008, the Liberal Democrat party has warned.

Following analysis of figures released by the Department for Communities and Local Government (CLG), parliament’s third largest party found double the number of families as in 2007 face the prospect of losing their homes.

According to the party’s research there are 60,000 families who spend 75 per cent or more of their disposable income – after income tax and national insurance – each month on mortgage payments alone.

It is this group that is considered most at risk.

“There are 60,000 families teetering on the edge of losing their homes, weighed down by massive debts,” explained Liberal Democrat shadow CLG secretary, Julia Goldsworthy.

“As living costs rise, and the credit crunch starts to bite, families are forced to cut back on essentials in order to keep a roof over their heads.”

The CLG figures reveal some 11,822,000 mortgages were outstanding during 2007, of which 27,100 ended in repossession – 0.23 per cent.

“Ministers are not prepared to deal with the housing crash as the safety nets have been withdrawn. There are almost a million fewer social homes to rent than during the last recession while the number of families waiting for housing has skyrocketed,” continued Ms Goldsworthy.

The party points out there were one million families on social housing waiting lists when Labour came to power in 1997, while the figure is now over 1.6 million.

“This government has buried its head in the sand, and it is overstretched families who are paying the price,” said Ms Goldsworthy.

“Ministers must act decisively and commit resources to a national network of financial advice centres, with face-to-face services that are free at the point of use.”