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Graham Awards


Buy To Let mortgage arrears soar as high interest rates hit

Data from mortgage lenders’ trade body UK Finance will make grim reading for anyone interested in the well-being of the housing market.

There were 8,980 buy to let mortgages in arrears of 2.5 per cent or more of the outstanding balance in the second quarter of 2023, which is 28 per cent leap on the previous quarter.

Within the BTL total, there were 4,810 buy to let mortgages in the lightest arrears band: this is representing between 2.5 and 5.0 per cent of the outstanding balance. This was a huge 41 per cent greater than in the previous quarter.


Some 440 BTL mortgaged properties were taken into possession in the second quarter of 2023, which shows a seven per cent rise on the previous quarter.

In the homeowner sector, there were 81,900 mortgages in arrears of 2.5 per cent or more of the outstanding balance - that’s some seven per cent greater than in the previous quarter.

A UK Finance spokesperson says: “The number of mortgage holders in arrears rose in Q2 as higher mortgage rates and the cost of living continued to weigh on households. 

“Although any rise in arrears can be worrying, overall numbers remain low with less than one per cent of homeowners and less than half a per cent of landlords behind on their payments. 

“Lenders have been preparing for any continuing increases in arrears, for example with the launch of the Mortgage Charter, and have already helped over 200,000 borrowers before they have got into financial difficulty by restructuring their repayments. 

“The number of homeowner and buy to let possessions in Q2 remain close to historic lows but are expected to continue to rise in line with our mortgage market forecast given the ongoing cost of living challenges.

“It’s important for homeowners and landlords to remember that there is support available to anyone struggling with their finances. If you think you might have difficulty making your mortgage payments, reach out to your lender early to find out the options available.”

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    Interest rates are trebling at end of fixes. Rents are unlikely to go up by more than inflation.

    Renters are more likely to default due to the difficulty in evicting them and the encouragement they get from Shelter.

    Property sales have stalled and prices are falling when they eventually sell.

    I can't see the connection with rising mortgage arrears and eventual repossessions - maybe I should consider a career in politics?


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