§ Mr. Raynsford
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, pursuant to his answer of 15 May,Official Report, column 238–39, if he will make a statement following his meeting with the Council of Mortgage Lenders on 2 June; and what is his latest estimate of the number of households (a) assisted to date and (b) likely to be assisted in the whole of 1992 by mortgage rescue schemes initiated by members of the Council of Mortgage Lenders as part of the package agreed in December 1991.
§ Mr. Baldry
[holding answer 3 June 1992]: Ministers met mortgage lenders yesterday to review progress on tackling repossessions. They were encouraged to hear the lenders' assessment that repossessions in 1992 will be significantly lower than they would have been without the package of measures announced by the Chancellor last December.
The Council of Mortgage Lenders estimates that measures taken since December will save some 55,000 repossessions this year: 40,000 as a result of new procedures for dealing with arrears cases; and 15,000 as a result of the direct payment to lenders of the mortgage interest element of income support.
The Government welcome the lenders' recognition that further efforts are necessary to tackle the arrears and repossessions problem. It agrees that lenders should continue to look at the whole range of options available for addressing this problem, including formal mortgage to rent schemes, shared equity arrangements and more generous repayment terms.
The Government continue to regard the level of repossessions as an important issue and will follow closely the progress lenders are making in tackling it.