Mortgage fears 'increasing stress'

HousesAlmost a third of British adults say that worries about rent or mortgage costs are causing stress within their families, a charity has found.

Some 32% of people said that concerns about housing costs were causing an emotional strain, equating to 15 million people if the figures were projected nationally, according to Shelter's findings.

A quarter (26%) of more than 4,000 people surveyed said that the struggle to cover rents or mortgages was causing arguments with their partner or other family members.

The latest research follows Shelter's research published earlier this month, which found that an estimated 7.8 million rent or mortgage payers in Britain are constantly struggling to keep up with their payments, marking a 44% increase from the same time last year.

Soaring rents due to high demand in the rental sector have piled the pressure on household budgets, along with sluggish wage growth and steep energy bill hikes, while experts are also predicting further increases to food costs.

Shelter quoted a mother-of-two named Jane from Derbyshire, who said she had run into mortgage arrears of £3,000 after being made redundant.

She said: "I'm really struggling. The arrears just keep mounting up and I'm now being threatened with court action. The worry of it all is keeping me awake at night, and the stress is damaging my health. I'm on anti-depressants now just to keep myself together."

Campbell Robb, chief executive of Shelter, said the findings reveal the "heartbreaking reality" of those living in fear of losing their home.

He said: "Behind closed doors millions of families face stress, sleepless nights and strained relationships as they desperately struggle to afford their housing bills."
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