SPEAKING ahead of the final stages of the Homeowner and Debtor Protection (Scotland) Bill (1), Graeme Brown, director, Shelter Scotland, housing and homelessness charity, said:
“Mortgage repossessions may not have reached the peaks predicted a year ago – but this is testament to the work carried out by the Scottish and UK Governments and the forbearance of responsible lenders. But this is no time for complacency. Mortgage repossessions are still higher than five years ago. Interest rates are at historic lows and can only rise in the future and lenders forbearance may not continue forever.
“That’s why the Homeowner and Debtor Protection Bill (2) is so important. If passed, it will require lenders, by law, to pursue every possible alternative before taking legal action.
“In addition, concerns have been raised about funding and capacity of the legal and advice sector in being able to help the homeowners who would have new rights. We share these concerns and urge MSPs to press Ministers during the Bill’s final stage to ensure that there will be extra investment in the sector to help meet this demand.”
He added: “The Scottish Government’s action to bring forward these additional protections for homeowners is timely, particularly amid the current financial climate, and Scotland’s flagship commitment to give everyone the right to a home by 2012.”
Anyone struggling with the cost of their mortgages or with any other housing problem should go to www.shelter.org.uk or call our free housing advice line on 0808 800 4444.
Notes to Editors
- The Stage 3 debate takes place on Thursday, February 11, 2010. See Scottish Parliament website http://www.scottish.parliament.uk/business/businessBulletin/bb-10/bb-02-09b.htm
- For the Shelter Scotland briefing, please click HERE.
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