Saturday, 10 September 2011

Protection for defaulting homeowners

SPAIN (Agencies) A resolution was passed in Congress last month that raises the amount of a borrower's salary that cannot be seized in case of mortgage default. The previous amount was €641, the country's minimum wage, and that is now €961. Should there be dependants, the untouchable amount is increased by 30% per family member. The measure aims to alleviate the hardship of many families whose breadwinners have lost their jobs in the economic crunch. With unemployment at 21 percent and an extremely high home ownership rate of over 80 percent, foreclosures have become a painful reality across the country. The banks are crying out for relief as their property portfolios have swollen to what one of them calls 'intolerable proportions'. And the government recently reduced VAT on new properties to its historic low of 4%.

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