Mortgage and rent arrears

What to do when faced with arrears

  • Always contact all your creditors (the people you owe the money to) and let them know you are having difficulties. If you rent, contact your landlord. They may be able to help you.
  • Work out a personal budget to help you decide how much you can afford to pay your creditors.
  • Don't ignore letters and phone calls from your creditors. The problem will get worse the longer you ignore it.
  • Don't borrow more money to pay off your debts without first thinking very carefully about it. Borrowing more money may only get you further into debt, especially if you are charged very high rates of interest.
  • Decide which of your debts are the most important and make sure that you tackle these first. Priority debts are usually those which can mean losing your home, having your gas water or electricity disconnected, or going to prison.
  • Always reply to letters from the court and try to attend all court hearings so that you can give your version of events and also make sure that the court is fully aware of your financial situation.
  • Mortgage arrears: If you make an offer to repay the arrears within the remaining term of a mortgage, the court may consider this a reasonable offer and order the mortgage lender to accept it.
  • Mortgage arrears: Sometimes as a last resort you can also ask the court for time to sell the property if you can prove that your home is worth more than the sum outstanding on the mortgage.
  • Rent arrears: If you attend the court hearing and can make an offer to repay rent arrears in some circumstances the court may consider this to be reasonable and may force the landlord to accept your offer. However this will depend on the type of tenancy you hold.
  • Rent arrears: Get advice on your tenancy rights before the case goes to court. If you have a defence to the possession action, you may be able to get legal aid and help from a solicitor.

Help when faced with arrears

If you are a Brent resident facing problems with mortgage arrears ring 020 8937 2000 to obtain advice from the Housing Needs Service.