We want to help
If you are worried about how you will cope with rising costs or interest rate rises, you should also seek advice early. Talking to us and obtaining free independent debt advice, especially if you have other debts too, will give you the best chance of avoiding bigger problems later on. The Building Societies Association has a helpful guide about paying your mortgage which you can find here.
You can call us on
If you are worried about your mortgage payments, talk to us, talk to your other financial providers, talk to debt advice agencies such as the National Debt Line. You’re not alone in going through this.
We're not the only ones who can help:
Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB)
Tel: 0808 808 4000
National Debt Line
Tel: 0808 808 4444
A free, independent and confidential debt advice service.
The Money Advice Service
Tel: 0300 500 5000
A free and impartial money advice service set up by the Government to provide tools and advice to help you manage your money.
Step Change Debt Charity
Tel: 0800 138 1111 (Freephone)
Free advice on problem debt.
What you can do
If you have any medical issues that might affect how you make your payments or how we communicate with you, tell us. This information will only be used to help us help you. Don’t hide, your problems won’t solve themselves if you ignore them. The sooner you talk to us the easier it will be for us to help you.
Make a change
It may be possible to change either the way you make your payment or the date you make your payment to fit in with when you receive your income.
Review your income & outgoings. Review all your income and outgoings and be realistic about what you need to pay. Talk to the providers of your nonpriority debts such as bank loan and credit card providers to reduce your monthly payments first. Pay what you can, your mortgage is a priority debt, therefore this should be paid before any other debt. If you can’t afford to make your payment in full, pay what you can and talk to us about how we can help.
Open all your post
If you are having financial difficulties it can be tempting to ignore the letters from your financial providers. Make sure you open all your post so you have a full picture of your financial situation.
Don’t borrow to pay a debt
Using payday lenders and credit cards to borrow to pay monthly payments for other debts is expensive and can cause more problems than it solves.
If you are threatened with legal action, don’t panic. Make sure that you attend any court hearings and take advantage of the legal advice that is available.
We don’t want to take your home into possession and we are always willing to agree a way to help.
Don’t walk away
It may seem like the easy option to surrender your property to us but this will be treated the same way as a property taken into possession and you will be responsible for the payments and any other charges until the mortgage is repaid. This will affect your ability to borrow in the future.
Be wary of “quick fix” schemes
Be careful if a company promises to solve your financial problems. If something looks too good to be true it usually is.
How we can help
There are lots of ways we can help and these are laid out in full in the Society’s Code of Practice for Mortgage Arrears which is available to download from the documentation library or a printed copy is available upon request from the Financial Support Team.
In determining which of the available options is most suitable for you, an in-depth examination and analysis of your individual circumstances and needs will be carried out. In the course of these examinations, your financial circumstances may be reviewed by the completion of an income and expenditure form and further evidence such as bank statements and pay slips may be requested.
Options which may be available to you:
• Change of payment date and method
• Change of mortgage type
• A reduced payment (Concession)
• An increased payment (Arrangement)
• Extension of term
You should always remember that legal action is a last resort. However,if we agree a way forward and you do not maintain the monthly payments agreed, we may be left with no option but to commence proceedings to take possession of your home.
If we take this course of action, we will advise you to contact your local authority to discuss rehousing with them.
Arrears Charging Policy
Most of our borrowers make their repayments on time. We believe it is fair that if you do not make your repayments on time, you pay part of the cost of our arrears administration. We may therefore add an administration charge to your account for each month that you are in arrears.
If we add fees to your account, we will charge interest on this amount from the day we added them.
It is our aim to help borrowers who are in genuine difficulty. You should contact us as soon as possible if you are having problems making your monthly repayments. We will not charge our standard fee if we have agreed other repayment arrangements and you are keeping to this arrangement.
In the unlikely event that we need to apply to the courts for possession of your property, we will charge a fee to cover the administration cost of doing this. You will find full details in our current administration fees over the page.
We recognise that if you are currently having or if you think you will have financial difficulties in the near future, your account needs to be looked after by our experienced and qualified Financial Support Team. Our advisors will personally handle your situation sympathetically and positively and will ensure that you are treated fairly at all times.
Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up the repayments on your mortgage
We can't agree on a solution
- We will send you a letter telling you that we may take legal action to collect the arrears or take possession of your home and this will give you fifteen working days to contact us
- If no response is received, we will ask our solicitors to send you a letter giving you a further 7 days to get in touch to discuss future payments to your account
- If you do not get in touch or we can’t agree on what payments you need to make, an application for a court hearing will be made, when you are informed of a hearing date, we strongly recommend that you attend the court in person and that you seek independent debt advice
- Starting court action does not necessarily mean that we will take possession of your home. We will continue to try and resolve the problem with you. Taking possession of your property is as a last resort
- Before we take possession of your home, we will give you advice about getting in touch with your local authority to see if they can find you somewhere else to live
- We will give you reasonable time to remove your belongings
- We will put it up for sale as soon as possible
- We have a duty to get the best price for your property that we can
- When we receive the money from selling your property, we will use it to settle any outstanding debts such as legal costs, outstanding mortgage, including any costs, interest and possession administration fee. If we are aware of anyone else who has lent you money and has a mortgage on your property, they will receive any money that may be left over after our loan has been repaid. If having done this, there is anything left; it will be paid to you.
If you do not think we have treated you fairly, you can complain to our Director and Chief Executive.
If your complaint is not dealt with to your satisfaction, you may take it to the Financial Ombudsman. The Financial Ombudsman Service provides a free and independent service for consumers, and can be contacted at:
Financial Ombudsman Service
Telephone No: 0300 123 9 123 or 0800 023 4567