Housing

Mortgage Rescue Scheme

Photo of houses on Regency View, Sandwell This page sets out details of the Government Mortgage Rescue Scheme which is part of a wider package of measures designed to prevent vulnerable families losing their homes.

See also information about Homeowners Mortgage Support

Important information for homeowners

Mortgage Help - It's your home, let's keep it that way

In the last year more than 330,000 homeowners have got help and advice with their mortgage - take your first step to joining them. For information on your options and to find out who you can talk to visit www.direct.gov.uk/mortgagehelp (external link) or speak to a trained adviser at the National Debtline free on 0808 808 4000. If you are facing problems in meeting your mortgage payments you should also contact your lender to tell them why you are struggling and discuss how you can work together to agree a solution.

What is the Mortgage Rescue Scheme?

The Mortgage Rescue Scheme has been put in place by Government to support up to 6,000 of the most vulnerable homeowners facing repossession to remain in their home, over two years.

It targets those families with dependent children, elderly and vulnerable groups at risk of repossession (that is, their lender is actively seeking possession of the property through the courts) who can no longer afford their repayments, and who would be entitled to homelessness assistance if repossessed.

For further information on these and other details about the scheme please read the frequently asked questions page.

How will it work?

Mortgage Rescue operates by bringing together local authorities, Registered Social Landlords (RSL), lenders and debt advice agencies. The are two options in the scheme:

  • Government Mortgage to Rent is designed to help the most vulnerable households on low incomes with little chance of sustaining a mortgage. The Registered Social Landlord (RSL) purchases the property and the applicant pays rent to the RSL at a level they can afford after a full assessment of household finances
  • Shared equity is designed to help householders who have experienced payment shocks and need some help in paying their mortgage. The Registered Social Landlord (RSL) provides an equity loan enabling the householders' mortgage repayments to be reduced.

How many people will the scheme help?

The scheme has the capacity to help up to 6,000 vulnerable households over two years.

It was announced as part of the 2009 Budget that the scheme was being expanded to help people in negative equity (where the total of their secured loans exceeds the value of their property) from 1 May 2009. Households that have debts that are up to 20 per cent greater than the value of their home are now able to apply for the scheme (provided all other eligibility criteria are met). The eligibility criteria can be found on the frequently asked questions page.

How can I apply?

You must make your application for Mortgage Rescue through your local authority. Referrals to a local housing authority can also be made by money advice agencies, courts or lenders.  

We have worked closely with all local authorities to emphasise the purpose and assist in the delivery of the scheme. All 326 Authorities now offer a Mortgage Rescue Scheme.

Information for local authorities

Information for local authorities about Real Help Now schemes they are delivering or advising on, to give immediate help to homeowners struggling to pay their mortgage can be found on the info4local - Real Help Now (external link) webpage.

In this section

Related publications

My favourites