The Co-operative Bank leads the way in responsible lending and sees 50% fall in repossessions

The Co-operative Bank leads the way in responsible lending and sees 50% fall in repossessions

Against a backdrop of the mortgage industry prediction of 75,000 repossessions this year, new figures from The Co-operative Bank Mortgages show that despite the current economic climate, the number of repossessions at The Co-operative Bank has actually halved over the past 12 months.

Figures from the Council of Mortgage Lenders estimated that the number of repossessions during 2009 will jump by 67% to 75,000. However, over the last 6 months The Co-operative Bank has only been involved in 8 repossessions* (0.015% of its mortgage book), compared to 16 repossessions in the preceding 6 month period.

Terry Jordan, Head of Mortgages at The Co-operative Bank, said: “Our repossession figures as a proportion of our mortgage book are extremely low, when compared with the industry average. We are committed to helping people stay in their homes and we always view repossessions as a last resort. Our responsible approach to lending has also resulted in a strong mortgage book as we believe in only lending to people what they are able to afford.”

“If any of our customers do face difficulties, we have a dedicated team of personal mortgage advisors able to give advice to customers on how to manage their finances and deal with any problems at the earliest stage.”

The Co-operative Bank personal mortgage advisors work on a pre-booked appointment system, with each initial consultation lasting for approximately one hour. This gives the advisors a complete picture of the customers’ situation. Each case is different and we provide customers with a personalised solution, arranging a new payment plan, changing the way the customer makes a payment or even changing their type of mortgage.

The Co-operative Bank has the following tips to help homeowners who may be experiencing difficulty with their mortgage payments:

Let your mortgage provider know as soon as possible if you are having problems repaying your mortgage or think that you might experience problems shortly.
Seek debt advice if you would like help with managing your finances.
Make sure you keep any other people paying the mortgage, and anyone guaranteeing the mortgage, up to date with what is happening.
Keep to the payment plan you agree with your mortgage lender, or tell them if there is a change in your circumstances which may affect the arrangement.
Check whether you can get any state benefits or tax credits which could help to increase your income.
If you have an insurance policy, check whether it would help with your payments.

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