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£4m extra pledged for debt advice

Housing Minister John Healey has extended free debt advice for families facing the threat of repossession, with an extra £4 million to go to debt advice agencies, as well as 80 court desks across the country.

36,000 cases have been seen by the court desks over the past year, and more than 100,000 households have benefited from free advice on managing their debts from charities and councils.

The Government claims that services offering free advice and representation in court have helped stop repossession in four out of five cases making use of their service.

Over the last year, over 330,000 homeowners have received help and advice with their mortgages.

Latest FSA figures show there were 13,987 repossessions between July and September, 5% less than at the beginning of the year.

Repossessions are running at half the rate of the last recession, and the Council of Mortgage Lenders has reduced their repossession forecasts for this year by over a third – from 75,000 to 48,000.

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