Hundreds of Weston families kicked out because of house repossessions

HUNDREDS of families in Weston are being kicked out of their homes as the number of properties being repossessed soars.

HUNDREDS of families in Weston are being kicked out of their homes as the number of properties being repossessed soars.

More than 600 people were told to leave their properties last year because owners failed to tackle mounting debts.

The massive increase in repossessions in the town has been blamed on people who are borrowing money without knowing the full risks.

Compared to 2006, the number of possession claims handed to landlords in Weston increased by a massive 70 per cent, compared to Bristol, Bath and Yeovil where the numbers decreased.

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The 285 claims given to landlords last year resulted from tenants not keeping up with rent payments, leading to mortgage fees not being met.

The tenants may have been evicted so the properties could be sold by the mortgage providers.

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The number of repossession claims given out to people who fell behind on mortgage payments for their own homes also increased in 2007 to 356.

Wendy Fletcher from North Somerset Citizens Advice Bureau said: "For the first time in years we are seeing people taking out loans secured on their home and, along with a mortgage, the total amount of money they have borrowed is more than their property is worth."

One family who went to the bureau for advice had borrowed £5,000 against their home in 2004.

Despite making monthly payments, increased interest rates meant that by January of this year the amount they owed had soared to £12,500.

Weston's Liberal Democrat prospective parliamentary candidate Mike Bell has criticised the Government for not preventing repossessions.

He said: "With higher borrowing costs and huge levels of personal debt taking their toll on families, it is inevitable that we will see even more repossessions in the future.

"More than 300 families in and around Weston paid the price last year. There are now serious concerns that in 2008, the situation will get worse.

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