68000 Northern Ireland homeowners in negative equity

By Michelle Rock

Negative equity remains a large problem for homeowners in the UK, with half a million mortgage borrowers said to be in negative equity.

Northern Ireland is the region with the highest percentage of property owners in negative equity according to the figures released by HML. The report suggests that 41 per cent of borrowers in Northern Ireland, equating to 68,000 property owners, are in negative equity - an astonishing 25 per cent more than the second highest region of the UK.

The property crash in Northern Ireland is the reason that so many mortgage borrowers are in negative equity, as a period of rocketing house prices was abruptly followed by recession and property values plummeted. Those who purchased during the property boom have seen house values drop by as much as 50 per cent in some areas.

While house prices in Northern Ireland stabilised and made some modest gains in 2013, values have a long way to go to reach something close to the prices many people actually paid for their houses. And because 100 per cent mortgages were readily available during the boom, many people are having to overpay on their monthly mortgage payment in order to reduce the negative equity so that they will one day be in a position to remortgage or sell their property.

If you are remortgaging, selling or purchasing a house in Northern Ireland, and require a property conveyancing solicitor to handle the legal process for you, contact Wilson Nesbitt in Belfast by calling 0800 840 9290.



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