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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

British Property Repos Plummet

LONDON -- The number of homes repossessed by mortgage lenders because of loan default fell by almost a quarter in the opening six months of 2000 compared with the first half of 1999, a sign the residential housing market remains solidly underpinned, a report Wednesday showed.

The Council of Mortgage Lenders said the number of properties taken into possession fell by more than 9 percent to 12,340, the lowest figure for more than a decade and down almost 25 percent compared with the first half of 1999.

"These figures are clearly very welcome to borrowers and lenders," said Peter Williams, director general at CML.

"The sharp fall in possessions reflects the strength of the economy and the housing market, as well as a clear commitment of lenders to sustain people in their homes wherever possible and to seek possession only as a last resort."

The report showed a significant fall in the first half of the year in the number of home loans with long (over 12 months) and medium-term (6-12 months) arrears. Over six months, these fell by 23 percent and 16 percent, respectively.