Theoretically the mortgage blacklist contains details of people who have been repossessed. It’s supposed to be maintained by the Council of Mortgage Lenders. They say that it’s held by the two main credit reference agencies and that you have to ask the lender who repossessed you which agency it records its repossession information with. But when we asked different lenders on behalf of people who had been repossessed the lenders told us they didn’t know who they deposited this information with. And that they only deposit this information in certain cases. But they wouldn’t tell us which cases. We checked the two main credit reference agencies for some repossessed people and found no signs of repossession details. It’s very fishy. We’re investigating the blacklist further; we have suspicions about how it actually works but we’ll post more when we have more evidence.
By the way, the Council of Mortgage Lenders and the credit reference agencies are very concerned about people calling it a blacklist. They say it isn’t a blacklist, just a record of repossession information. We say: it’s a blacklist.
The credit reference agencies say lenders record repossession information that includes:
- the repossession address
- the address from which the mortgage application was made
- the address that the repossessee has moved to.
Note that the credit reference agencies are also members of GAIN – the Gone Away Information Network – which lists debtors who move address without giving a forwarding address. We’ve found no signs of any repossessees actually being listed by GAIN members but we don’t have access to the whole list. Again, we have our suspicions about how the list actually works and will post more evidence when we have more information. In the meantime, you can see the Council of Mortgage Lenders’ information about the repossession blacklist at http://www.cml.org.uk/faqs/posreg.htm
If your lender applies to the court for a possession order and the court grants it, then this will be recorded by the Register of County Court judgements. This is separate to the Council of Mortgage Lenders’ possession register (though there are close links between the Register of County Court Judgements, which is actually a credit industry-owned company, and mortgage lenders). If you hand in the keys to the property – a voluntary repossession – then lenders do not usually apply to the court for a possession order. This is why – we think – many repossessees do not face a money judgement order and can find no trace of their repossession on their credit reference. We think the credit reference agencies do still hold information about the repossession but that you have to serve a full SARN notice on them to see it. We’d like more feedback on this.