North South Divide in UK Property Reposessions

The north-south divide is alive and well with the rate of home repossessions in 2013 being 44 per cent higher in northern England than in the south.

Research from e.surv chartered surveyors – analysing court-ordered repossessions in England and Wales in 2013 broken down by post code – shows that there were 5.6 repossessions per 1,000 households in the north.

This is 44 per cent higher than the 3.9 repossessions per 1,000 households in the south.

However, both figures show a significant improvement on 2012 levels which were 6.3 repossessions per 1,000 households in the north and 4.4 in the south.

The south west of England historically has the lowest number of court-ordered repossessions, accounted for by its generally older and more affluent population.

The worst five repossession postcodes in 2013 were:

Oldham 8.6 per 1,000 households (747 in total)

Romford 7.8 (754)

Bradford 7.4 (835)

Wigan 7.4 (460)

Blackpool 7.0 (477)

The most ‘improved’ postcodes in 2013 – not necessarily the absolute lowest but those showing the biggest improvements on 2012 – were:

EC London 1.0 per 1,000 households

Carlisle 3.0

Harrogate 2.3

Telford 5.2

Hull 4.9

“At some point soon the Bank of England may choose to raise the base rate. A higher base rate will translate into higher repayments for many, which could tip a whole host of borrowers into the red. The base rate rise may cause repossessions to temporarily bounce back,” warns e.surv director Richard Sexton.