Sharp rise in older people with mortgage arrears
Thursday 21st June 2012
The number of older people seeking help with mortgage arrears is on the rise, according to figures released by debt charity Consumer Credit Counselling Service.
It says that the number of over-60s contacting it for help with mortgage arrears has risen by 44% since 2009.
In other age groups, the increase has been just 3%.
A total of 5,719 home owners over the age of 60 contacted the charity last year for advice on dealing with debt, of whom one in five (1,111) had mortgage arrears.
The average arrears in this age group is also up, from £3,556 in 2009 to £4,375 in 2011. The average length of arrears last year was six and a half months.
Delroy Corinaldi, CCCS director of external affairs, said: “This is a trend which we will need to monitor closely. It is particularly worrying given the current low interest rates.
“With many older people taking higher levels of debt with them into retirement, this could be the start of a long-term trend towards far higher levels of mortgage difficulty in later life.”
The latest Government figures show that the number of people working beyond state pension age has almost doubled – to 1.4 million – in the past two decades.
The National Employment Savings Trust (NEST) this week launched a savings campaign aimed at encouraging people to save for their old age after research found that 71% of people think they have not put enough money aside.
Yesterday, Nigel Green, CEO of deVere, the world’s largest independently owned financial advice firm, called on the financial advice industry to work closely with the Government on revitalising the UK’s saving culture. He said Britain was in the grip of a pensions crisis.
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