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The number of property repossessions dropped in the UK over the last year, according to research by letting and estate agent, Benham and Reeves.
The research shows that there were 7,906 property repossessions across England and Wales in the last 12 months, down -2 per cent from 8,065 in the previous 12 months.
However, the North West remains the biggest property repossession hotspot with 1,689 homes repossessed over the last 12 months although this figure has fallen -10 per cent when compared to the 12 months prior.
Yorkshire and the Humber has also seen a notable level of property repossessions over the last year at 1,134.
The North East is the only other region to see property repossessions exceed the 1,000 mark (1,115), while the South East (766) and West Midlands (693) are also home to some of the highest levels.
The East of England (188) and London (542) have seen some of the lowest levels of repossessions in the last year.
While the East of England is home to the lowest level of property repossessions in the last 12 months, it has seen the largest increase when compared to the 12 months previous, up +10 per cent.
The South East (+9 per cent), South West (+8 per cent), North East (+8 per cent) and East Midlands (+6 per cent) and London (+0.4 per cent) have also seen an increase.
Wales has seen the biggest drop, down -15 per cent.
Director of Benham and Reeves, Marc von Grundherr, commented: ‘An overall decline in the number of property repossessions across England and Wales is a welcome trend and one that suggests a slight boost in affordability for the average homeowner.
‘This is no doubt due to low interest rates that have resulted in the cost of borrowing remaining favourable for the nation’s buyers.’
‘Generally speaking, the larger numbers of property repossessions are in regions where low incomes will cause some to fall behind, while areas such as London where the earning potential is greater are home to a lower number. However, the flip side to this is that while these less affordable regions are seeing lower levels of repossessions, they are also home to a greater increase year on year.’