Northern Ireland

One man explains why he now faces losing the keys to his home

Citizens' Advice has said the cases of mortgage debt it is dealing with have risen by 64% in the last year. One man in west Belfast, who did not want to give his name, told the BBC that he now faces losing his home.

"I had my mortgage and then I got an additional loan of £15,000 for new windows and central heating," he said.

"Then I got another loan for a new kitchen.

"The house was over-crowded had five kids, me, my wife, so we decided to put an extra bedroom and converted the attic into a bedroom. We got an extra £30,000."

His three loans on top of his mortgage amounted to between £98,000 and £100,000.

During the property boom, his home was valued around £220,000 and he had a full-time job as a taxi driver.

"The mortgage seemed to be all right and then I had problems," he said.

"My marriage broke-up, I ended up with mental health problems. I had to stay in hospitals."

As a result, he has found it difficult to pay his mortgage and meet the payments on his loan.

"At the minute, I'm in arrears on my mortgage by about £1,400," he said.

'Impossible'

"On my other loans, I have arrears of between £1,500 or £1,600."

The father-of-five said it was "virtually impossible" to fulfil his financial commitments because he was unable to work.

"I can't make that many repayments at all. I'm only getting income support for myself," he said.

"Around about April the repossession order was in the courts.

"Just last week I got another phone call saying that the house will be repossessed within three or four weeks."

His house could end being sold by his mortgage lender for less than the value of his mortgage.

"I am worried about it but I can't see no way out of it at the moment," he said.

"There is no work about.

"I'm not fit for work even just because of the way things happened and my nerves got the better of me.

"I can't even wait in queues no more, my nerves just get the better of me every time."

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites