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Amy1972

Possession Hearing. Help needed Please.

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Hi, Due to my Husband losing his job last July and the subsequent wranglings over the grounds of his dismissal we have had no income since September 2010 when we started our own business. Long story short we have tried with our lenders Woolwich (Barclays) to come to a payment arrangement whilst we sell the property which we put on market Sept 2010. Woolwich sent out investigator in Feb/March who said he was sure that Woolwich would extend period for selling. A month or so later Woolwich sent letter with his report saying that as we had been paying some other loans and not them they would refer to their solicitors. We contacted Woolwich to say we had not realised that we must pay them first and could we make an arrangement with them, they said no point unless we could pay full arrears (approx £4,500 at that point) but that their solicitors would make an arrangement with us.

We then recieved (about 5 weeks ago) a letter from TLT saying they would file for possession but to contact them within 7 days to discuss. They refused to make an arrangement, we asked' why 7 days', they said 'you may have won lottery in that time and be able to pay full arrears'. 10 days ago we informed them that we had changed estate agent and put house on at Woolwich proposed 'Forced Sale' Value and that we had 3 viewing booked for that week and requested 28 days to apply for WFTC and to hopefully sell house. They agreed to this and said would call in 2 weeks to check progress. The following day they issued Possession proceedings against us. When we phoned and asked why the had changed their minds they just keep saying they can make arrangements but when we try the won't.

To top it all as predicted we had and accepted an offer for the property on Saturday. We have phoned Woolwich and TLT today to try and discuss a way forward and were greeted with a lot of don't knows and general vagueness.

Sorry this is lengthy but we feel they are in breach of the Pre-action Protocal and assume we will still have to attend court on 18th August and wondered if you could help us with what to ask the judge for, adjournment, dismissal etc.

Many thanks in advance.

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Hi, Due to my Husband losing his job last July and the subsequent wranglings over the grounds of his dismissal we have had no income since September 2010 when we started our own business. Long story short we have tried with our lenders Woolwich (Barclays) to come to a payment arrangement whilst we sell the property which we put on market Sept 2010. Woolwich sent out investigator in Feb/March who said he was sure that Woolwich would extend period for selling. A month or so later Woolwich sent letter with his report saying that as we had been paying some other loans and not them they would refer to their solicitors. We contacted Woolwich to say we had not realised that we must pay them first and could we make an arrangement with them, they said no point unless we could pay full arrears (approx £4,500 at that point) but that their solicitors would make an arrangement with us.

We then recieved (about 5 weeks ago) a letter from TLT saying they would file for possession but to contact them within 7 days to discuss. They refused to make an arrangement, we asked' why 7 days', they said 'you may have won lottery in that time and be able to pay full arrears'. 10 days ago we informed them that we had changed estate agent and put house on at Woolwich proposed 'Forced Sale' Value and that we had 3 viewing booked for that week and requested 28 days to apply for WFTC and to hopefully sell house. They agreed to this and said would call in 2 weeks to check progress. The following day they issued Possession proceedings against us. When we phoned and asked why the had changed their minds they just keep saying they can make arrangements but when we try the won't.

To top it all as predicted we had and accepted an offer for the property on Saturday. We have phoned Woolwich and TLT today to try and discuss a way forward and were greeted with a lot of don't knows and general vagueness.

Sorry this is lengthy but we feel they are in breach of the Pre-action Protocal and assume we will still have to attend court on 18th August and wondered if you could help us with what to ask the judge for, adjournment, dismissal etc.

Many thanks in advance.

 

You must attend the hearing.

 

You must obtain written proof from the buyer's solicitor indicating that they are going to buy the house and giving an expected completion date (or a letter from your own solicitor confirming the sale and expected completion date). With concrete proof such as this, the Judge will almost certainly not order possession up to the mortgagee.

 

It is not enough for you to simply state it, either verbally, or in your defence statement. It must be in writing and from a solicitor.

 

In the interim you should dispense with all your other payments to non-secured debt and recommence payment to the mortgage company and offer a payment off the arrears too. You should start making these payments now - do NOT make an offer to them and wait for a response - just start paying and then send them a letter informing them that you are paying the CMI plus X amount towards the arrears until the sale goes through.

 

How much are you selling the house for? How much is the outstanding mortgage? How much are the arrears to date? Will the sum you receive after paying these things (plus solicitors fees etc) be sufficient to repay the outstanding mortgage?

 

You will be requesting an adjournment for time to sell. If you are making payments plus an amount towards the arrears AND you have proof positive in the form of a letter from your buyer's solicitors, your request should not be denied

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Hi Lea,

Thank you for you response.

In answer to your question there is sufficient equity in the property to pay mortgage, all outstanding loans and have £35k left. We think this may be why they have used possession as a first line of defence and not a last resort. The outstanding amount of the mortage is approx 64% of the value sold at. The arrears to date are approx £6k, Mortgage approx £112k, sold value £176k.

We are not in a position to pay the full mortgage payment and bit off arrears at the moment as have not yet recieved any WFTC and whilst business has picked up and we have billed out quite a bit in last 8 days the monies are not in the account yet so cannot draw off them. Should we pay anything at all, even though this would be a really small amount at the moment? Also we sent stop hold letters to all creditors 10 days ago and are not paying them at the moment either (we were paying them with savings and some drawings, savings have run out and drawings limited as I mentioned above).

Many Thanks

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Hi Lea,

Thank you for you response.

In answer to your question there is sufficient equity in the property to pay mortgage, all outstanding loans and have £35k left. We think this may be why they have used possession as a first line of defence and not a last resort. The outstanding amount of the mortage is approx 64% of the value sold at. The arrears to date are approx £6k, Mortgage approx £112k, sold value £176k.

We are not in a position to pay the full mortgage payment and bit off arrears at the moment as have not yet recieved any WFTC and whilst business has picked up and we have billed out quite a bit in last 8 days the monies are not in the account yet so cannot draw off them. Should we pay anything at all, even though this would be a really small amount at the moment? Also we sent stop hold letters to all creditors 10 days ago and are not paying them at the moment either (we were paying them with savings and some drawings, savings have run out and drawings limited as I mentioned above).

Many Thanks

 

You should pay as much as you can - it shows willing and the court looks on this favourably. The fact that you have claimed WTC is a positive, make sure you have proof of this and a date on when you are likely to hear back from them with how much you might receive.

 

In the meantime, get all the documentation I referred to in my initial response - you will need this to produce in court. If you have proof positive that the house has a buyer, then I cannot see any reason for a court to award possession to the mortgagee.

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