Belfast Telegraph

Mortgage holders at risk from rates rise

By Tom Lawrence

A "tsunami" of British homeowners face falling behind on their mortgage repayments as soon as interest rates begin to rise, a leading banker has warned.

Richard Banks, the chief executive of UK Asset Resolution (Ukar), believes a "scary" number of families face being repossessed unless lenders prepare for higher rates.

In an interview with the Guardian, Mr Banks, whose organisation was set up to run the nationalised mortgages of Bradford -amp; Bingley and parts of Northern Rock following the banking crisis, also said mortgage providers had been too lenient with some customers, forcing them further into debt.

Mr Banks said a "a tough love approach" was needed to combat the potential problem.

"It's treating customers fairly, not nicely, because if you can't afford your mortgage you are only increasing your indebtedness," he said.

"If we allow you to increase your indebtedness, that's not really fair to you."