Established 2005 Registered Charity No. 1110656

Scottish Charity Register No. SC043760

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Shelter Scotland responds to interest rate news

July 03 2010
It‘s not a case of if repossessions will go up but how high, says director

Graeme Brown, director of Shelter Scotland, the housing and homelessness charity, responded to the news that interest rates will continue to be frozen at 0.5 per cent. He says: "We know many hundreds of thousands of already financially stretched homeowners will have been crossing their fingers that interest rates would stay stable as they are dreading the news that their mortgage payments will go up.

"They can breathe a sigh of relief today, but for how long?

"With inflation already above target, it's got to be a real possibility that rates will rise soon in an effort to curb the upward pressure on prices. Until now, low rates and government support schemes have been crucial to keeping repossessions under control but there is no question that all that will change once they go up.

"It's not a case of if repossessions will go up but how high, and the only thing the new UK Government can do to restrain them is continue current support available to help keep people in their homes."

The housing and homelessness charity recently joined forces with the Council for Mortgage Lenders (CML) and other organisations to write a joint letter to the new Chancellor, George Osborne, and the new Business Secretary, Vince Cable, calling for a clear commitment in the first budget to extend current support measures for borrowers in most financial difficulty.

Mr Brown continued: "The new UK Government needs to be ready with a strong package of support in place once rates start to rise. In particular Support for Mortgage Interest, which is currently helping 220,000 struggling homeowners keep the roof over their head, must be maintained or thousands of homeowners will be at risk."

• Visit http://scotland.shelter.org.uk which provides information on what help is available, or call the free helpline on 0808 800 4444

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