More can’t meet mortgage payments, house prices drop again

Some 65,000 households currently find it difficult to meet their mortgage payments, double the figure of four years ago, according to debt registration agency BKR on Friday.

Over the first three months of this year, 2,900 people were added to the list of poor payers.
The economic crisis, rising unemployment and the increase in the divorce rate are to blame, BKR director Peter van den Bosch told news agency ANP.
House prices
At the same time, house prices fell again in March, further adding to the risk of households end up owing more than their house is currently worth.
According to the national statistics office CBS, house prices were down 4.7% in March, compared with the year earlier period. In February, the annual drop was 3.4%.
The drop in prices affected all regions and all housing types, the CBS said.
Austerity talks
The insurance sector association VvV on Friday urged the government not to make any changes to the current mortgage tax relief system. The 30-year tax break is one of the potential items for change in the ongoing austerity talks.
But forcing households to meet tougher repayment schedules will have dramatic consequences for the housing market, the VvV said. In particular, house prices could fall 20%, the organisation claims.
According to CBS figures, just 24,000 homes were sold in the first three months of this year, almost half the 2007 figure.

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