Quarter of West Country households facing mortgage timebomb

A quarter of all households in the West of England face a mortgage ‘bomb’ next year, according to the region’s mayor.

It comes after Mayoral Combined Authority analysis revealed the clearest picture yet of the scale of the mortgage crisis in the region.

Data showing there are around 26,000 households who have fixed term mortgages concluding in the next 12 months – around 25 per cent all homeowners.

These families coming off their low-rate fixed mortgage deals face a repayments rise of nearly £2,600, the analysis suggests, meaning a total ‘mortgage bomb’ hitting the region of around £67m in the next year.

This comes as YouGov polling shows just under half of all homeowners with a mortgage say they will struggle to meet their payments in the next 12 months.

Mayor Dan Norris, who has responsibility for regional economic development, is calling on ministers to urgently step in to ensure that rising mortgage costs don’t result in a wave of repossessions, including considering proposals like reinstating mortgage payment holidays for locals.

He said: “Thousands more households will see their mortgages skyrocket this year and next despite so many already struggling to cope during this frightening cost-of-living crisis.

“This isn’t small beer here – we are talking serious sums. £200 less a month in your pocket, on top of everything else, will hit locals hard. And it will have a much wider impact when it comes to the economy too as people will be going out and treating themselves much less.

“This mortgage penalty is another bitter blow for West of England families, which is why I’m calling on ministers to take urgent steps to protect homeowners in the West through this crisis – this year and next.”