A recent report by the Department for Constitutional Affairs stated that the number of mortgage possession actions in England and Wales had increased by 55% in Q3 2005 compared to the same period last year. It was also the highest quarterly figure since Q3 1993.
However the increase in mortgage possession actions has not been experienced throughout the industry. The Leeds has seen the reverse of this trend resulting in a 12% decrease in possession actions in Q3 2005 compared to Q3 2004 and a decrease of 24% for the year to Q3 compared to the same period last year.
This downward trend is a direct result of the society developing its strategies to identify potential arrears problems as early as possible, and work with customers who may be experiencing financial difficulty.
Alan Brady, head of collections at Leeds, says: “Customers are not always aware of the options available to them when their circumstances change and they may find paying their mortgage a struggle.
Whenever one of our mortgage customers experiences difficulties, or changes in their personal circumstances, we work with them. If we can support them early, before the arrears build up, the problem is much easier to fix and they get back on track much quicker.
We also have a team of counsellors who go out and visit customers, at their convenience, and carry out a detailed financial analysis to determine the best solutions available for each customer.”