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Home repossession experience anyone? :-(

(20 Posts)
ScouseBird8364 Sat 17-Jan-15 11:47:20

I'm in need of some urgent reassurance (hopefully) or advice.

We may be moving into a HA property within the coming weeks, due to many issues, but, long story short, after my hubby's Stroke, we are facing mortgage repossession on our home (exceeded all help, done as much as we can, no longer sustainable etc).

Anyhow, would we still be accepted for housing benefit before they actually repossess (if we are living in new home) or would we need to actually wait for court and everything before we'd be granted it?

It's in very negative equity, so no chance of any gains sad

ScouseBird8364 Sat 17-Jan-15 20:51:37

I need advice urgently sad Is there nobody out there who has been through repossession?

ScouseBird8364 Sat 17-Jan-15 21:47:14

Please...anyone sad sad sad another night of not sleeping and scouring the net for answers then sad sad sad sad

MisForMumNotMaid Sat 17-Jan-15 21:54:39

Have you tried shelter? They may be able to give you more info on your exact circumstances. They claim to have advisors on hand 365 days a year.

Bumping for you that someone with actual experience comes by.

gallicgirl Sat 17-Jan-15 21:57:04

Long time since I've done benefits so not sure. A house usually counts as capital but can be disregarded in some circumstances. When assessing the value of the house they take market value less outstanding mortgage less 10% selling costs, so it may be that it won't have an effect on your new HB claim.

However, you really should call your local council to check the details for certain. You do remain the legal owner until the property is sold but for council tax purposes you can have a discount once you vacate and furniture is removed, again check the length of the discount with your council as it varies now. Once the property is formally repossessed there is an indefinite exemption until it's sold.
Please do not give back the keys and walk away assuming it will be repossessed as you will remain liable for all bills as owner. Additionally I have known some mortgage companies to delay repossession when there is negative equity (Northern Rock).

Personally I'd wait for court before moving. Sorry you're in this situation and I hope you get a favourable outcome.

MoreBeta Sat 17-Jan-15 22:12:17

Please DO NOT hand back the keys and walk out of your home.

You will be classed as making yourself as intentionally homeless. In that case the Council will not rehouse you. They are obliged to do so if you are legally evicted. You must wait for eviction.

Please be in constant contact with your local Council form now on. You are in a vulnerable position and need their assistance. The housing officer should have your case as an open file on his/her desk.

As gallicgirl says you may be allowed to stay in your home for some time even if not paying the mortgage if you are in negative equity as banks are reluctant to crystallise a los and have an empty property to look after.

Above all make sure you are using your cash income to feed yourself and the electric, water and heating on. Your house is lost. Nothing else matters after that. I am very sorry you are in this situation.

You will need advice of getting a debt relief order after the house has been repossessed which will allow you to get rid of all your other debts and start again.

Quitelikely Sat 17-Jan-15 22:15:19

So have you been taken to court?

Have you taken your repossession notice To the council?

What did they say?

ScouseBird8364 Sat 17-Jan-15 22:20:16

We've been on reduced mortgage payment plans for over a year now, but it's at the point where they're demanding more and more from the arrears (now 3 months). Because of the situation we were given a high priority social housing banding just before Xmas and actually have a pre-tenancy interview on Tuesday, for the first property we placed a bid on...

This is all great as we are being helped immensely by the Council, but I really need an answer as to whether our HB claim would be successful or whether we need to wait for an actual eviction date...???

Approx 20k negative equity in home - we will not be making ourselves intentionally homeless, as Council have agreed and had confirmation from our mortgage company that it's no longer sustainable, that's why we will be letting them follow through with the repossession

ScouseBird8364 Sat 17-Jan-15 22:23:27

Thank you so far for your comments, you don't know how much I appreciate them.

I was surprisingly coping with it all really well, until last night...I suffer with GAD and had to go back on Fluoxetine not so long ago, but I think I'd gotten myself excited at the prospect of getting this house, so close to my son's school (a 2-min walk away, massive saving on diesel) and hoping to move before baby comes in just under 4 weeks sad sad sad

Feeling really sad tonight sad

gallicgirl Sat 17-Jan-15 22:26:56

20K is too much for a debt relief order, limit is £16000 debt. Perhaps it's worth talking to Stepchange to see what your options are. I'd hate for you to go through all this turmoil and still have to pay the remainder of the mortgage after losing your home.

MagratsHair Sun 18-Jan-15 19:32:05

So sorry to hear this op.

My marital home was repossessed after I left ex H and I got through it with the help of the forum on moneysavingexpert. I can't rate them highly enough, they are ace.

The debt relief order bit is under the Bankruptcy part but I can't remember off the top of my head if there's a separate repossession part.

Go and have a look and start a thread, they are non judgemental and there are advisors from debt charities and the CAB that post and reply to questions and their knowledge is up to date.

brew thanks brew

HeadDoctor Sun 18-Jan-15 22:26:15

OP I'm so sorry, that sounds dreadfully stressful.

My ex husband has told me our FMH has just come out of negative equity but he still cannot release me from the mortgage as he has run up £23k of arrears and fees. He claims £19k is repossession costs for a repossession that he managed to avoid. That seems extortionate to me - is that how much a lender would charge?

orangepomegranate Mon 19-Jan-15 09:59:56

I've been bankrupt and I agree with the recommendation of the Bankruptcy board on MSE. They have a few debt/insolvency professionals posting so the advice is pretty sound. Stepchange are also good for advice and dealing with the specifics of your case.

The limit for a DRO is £15k, although it will be rising to £20k in October. But Bankruptcy will be an option if the amount owed is too high for a DRO. It costs more than a DRO but otherwise is quite similar, and not as bad as you'd imagine, especially if you are in HA housing (I was too) and if your income is low enough not to end up with a payment agreement. In fact it barely had any effect on my every day life except for clearing my debts.

ScouseBird8364 Mon 19-Jan-15 16:53:18

so, it may seem things may just go from bad to worse sad I feel physically sick from lack of sleep and extreme worry about this all weekend.

Whilst I really do appreciate the replies, issues like Bankruptcy, DRO's etc will all be issues that we will be looking into in the not so distant future - my initial concern is the issue of whether we WILL be awarded housing benefit whilst awaiting repossession OR whether we have to have been physically evicted, ie standing on the street, kids and bags in toe sadenvy

Rang Shelter today - they didn't know!
Rang HB office at Council - the lady who answered phone basically said as our home is classed as an 'asset' then we would not get the HB UNTIL we have been repossessed but to email the HB manager to double check, which I have, but to no avail sad

We have this pre-tenancy interview tomorrow and if we are offered the property we have no way of knowing whether we will get HB or not, the system is a fucking mess, why can't I just get a straight answer from anyone? sad sad sad

I can't believe that in 3 weeks tomorrow I will be going into hospital to have my baby, I am so stressed I don't feel I can take anymore - Mumsnet is my only support right now sad

Please, anyone, has anyone been through this or had to complete a HB claim form and had to declare a second property or mortgage??? sad

antimatter Mon 19-Jan-15 17:06:58

Maybe ask MN to move it to Legal matters section?
I hope someone is going to be able to answer your questions soon!

orangepomegranate Mon 19-Jan-15 19:13:04

It's certainly possible to get HB with a second home in some cases - the one I know of is when relationships break down and the marital home is on the market, then the value of the home is ignored for six months.

I'm very surprised that Shelter haven't been able to tell you as they are normally who I'd recommend for housing issues. If you have any legal advice centres/CAB in your area they may be able to help.

On the MSE Benefits board, there is a poster who is a housing benefit officer so you could ask on there for advice.

But tbh I think you will only know for sure once you've applied for HB, filled out all the sections of the form relating to your second property and had it assessed by the council. I would think that the HA will be patient while the HB forms are going through, they certainly were with me and they are far more understanding than a private landlord.

Georgethesecond Mon 19-Jan-15 19:19:05

Try phoning CAB first thing tomorrow. 03444 111 444. Don't leave it till later, the queues get massive and it's not a free number.

listsandbudgets Wed 21-Jan-15 09:25:49

Sorry you're in this mess op.

A little bit of advice. If the worst happens and the house is repossessed please leave it in the best state you can. We bought a repossessed house and probably got it for 30k less than we should have because the previous owmers had trashed it. Radiator pipes, wiring, plumbing, plastering even an iternal wall half smashed down.

They are still being persued for the mortgage shortfall and we paid builders 20k to do it up -money that otherwise would have been taken off their debt. Apparently this is really common with repossessions as people are understandably so angry and distressed.

Please don't fall into this trap.

I am glad the council are helping you and i hope you and your family come through all this with the least pain possible

ScouseBird8364 Wed 21-Jan-15 10:31:45

Hi listsandbudgets,

Thanks for your message. We wouldn't dream of it to be honest and I don't understand why people do sad It would make me really sad to destroy the home we'd built up over the past 8 years, although the thing I am a little frustrated about is having to leave our designer radiators sad They are beautiful and were very expensive sad

We will be taking our ceiling shades and chandeliers but replacing them with the standard light fittings that must be used x

DebbieKnowsDebt Wed 21-Jan-15 11:39:07

Hello...The amount of HB you may get can be reduced depending on your savings & capital. Capital includes anything of value you or your partner owns, aside from the house you live in. It includes shares, property, investments and redundancy payments but doesn't include everything you own. The following capital can be overlooked or disregarded:
•the value of your personal possessions; car, jewellery etc
•the value of the home you own and live in
•the value of the home you own will be disregarded for 26 weeks if you cannot live there because of a relationship breakdown;
•the value of the home you own will be disregarded completely if your former partner still lives there and is a lone parent;
•the value of the home you own will be disregarded for 26 weeks or longer if you are taking reasonable steps to sell the property. The 26 week period applies from when you first took steps to sell the property, this may have been before you made a claim for housing benefit;
•business assets are disregarded for someone who is self employed while they continue to work as a self employed person;
•business assets will be disregarded for 26 weeks for a self employed person who is unable to work due to illness;

This is not a complete list of when capital can be ignored and in most of these cases certain conditions apply. For further advice see below:

I hope this helps and good luck.

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