The number of tenants in severe arrears in the first quarter – those more than two months behind on their rent – stands at 68,000, down from 105,000 in the same period last year. Those owing more than two months’ rent now represent 1.4 per cent of all tenancies in the UK, down from 2.3 per cent year ago. The number of tenants facing eviction through court order fell in the final quarter of 2013 – the latest data available – with a total of 30,324 tenants facing eviction notices. This represents a quarterly fall of 3.4 per cent, down from 31,380 in the third quarter of 2013. Landlords have continued to benefit from a buoyant mortgage market and improvements in the financial position of tenants, with landlords’ own mortgage arrears falling for the fifth quarter in a row and standing at the lowest level since the second quarter of 2008. By the end of 2013 the number of buy-to-let mortgages over three months in arrears stood at 16,500, down 4.6 per cent since 2013’s third quarter. This leaves buy-to-let mortgage arrears down 16.2 per cent on an annual basis.
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