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Thousands face losing their homes

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More than 3,400 homes will be repossessed in the West Midlands this year, according to figures released today.

More than 3,400 homes will be repossessed in the West Midlands this year, according to figures released today.

Finance company HML says cuts, job losses and price rises will force families in the region to give up their homes.

It predicts that there will be 3,406 properties repossessed in this region and more than 33,000 all across the UK.

The figures are released as another survey predicts that the average family needs to find around £1,300 a year more to maintain the living standards it enjoyed 12 months ago.

HML predicts repossessions nationally are likely to fall in the first half of the year to 15,557, before rising to 17,700 during the second six months.

The group predicts repossession numbers will keep rising in 2012 with between 35,000 and 40,000 families losing their homes.

Neil Warman, chief commercial and finance officer of HML, said: "We think repossessions will begin to rise during the second half of this year.

"Of particular concern this year will be the impact of rising inflation and interest rates on hard-pressed homeowners and the effect of continuing job losses."

He said increasing pressure on borrowers who were in work to be able to afford their mortgages, combined with the delayed impact of job losses for public sector workers and benefit cuts, were likely to lead to the continuing increase in repossessions in 2012.

Meanwhile, retirement income company MGM Advantage has worked out that rising inflation means UK households collectively need to find an extra £35 billion to maintain the standard of living enjoyed 12 months ago — that works out as £1,360 per family.

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