Mortgages: Government Assistance

Work and Pensions written question – answered on 30th March 2010.

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Photo of Grant Shapps Grant Shapps Shadow Minister (Communities and Local Government) (Housing and Planning), Co-Chair, Conservative Party

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many households received assistance under the Support for Mortgage Interest Scheme in each of the last 24 months.

Photo of Helen Goodman Helen Goodman Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)

holding answer 10 February 2010

Financial support for home owners who are having difficulty in meeting their mortgage payments is provided through the benefits system. Help is available towards the interest on mortgages (known as Support for Mortgage Interest) as part of income support, income-based jobseeker's allowance, income-related employment and support allowance and state pension credit.

The following table shows the number of households who have received assistance under the Support for Mortgage Interest Scheme each quarter since February 2008. The information requested is not available on a monthly basis.

Income support, income-based jobseeker's allowance and state pension credit claimants who are receiving assistance under the Support for Mortgage Interest Scheme
Total SMI population
February 2008 204,900
May 2008 202,200
August 2008 199,400
November 2008 197,400
February 2009 204,200
May 2009 215,400
August 2009 221,000

1. Figures have been rounded to the nearest hundred.

2. Figures have been uprated using 5 per cent. proportions against 100 per cent. Work and Pensions Longitudinal Study totals.

3. Employment and support allowance was introduced in October 2008. No estimate is available yet for the number of employment and support allowance (income-related) cases.

4. The best statistics on benefits are now derived from 100 per cent. data sources. However, the 5 per cent. sample data still provide some detail not yet available from the 100 per cent. data sources. In this case reliable data for mortgage interest support is not available from the 100 per cent. data so the 5 per cent. data has been used, the latest of which is August 2009.

5. Pension credit was introduced on 6 October 2003 and replaced minimum income guarantee (income support for people aged 60 or over). The vast majority of people who were previously in receipt of the minimum income guarantee transferred to pension credit in October 2003. Residual minimum income guarantee cases are included in the income support figures.

6. Pension credit is claimed on a household basis and therefore the number of people that pension credit helps is the number of claimants in addition to the number of partners for whom they are also claiming.


Department for Work and Pensions, Information Directorate, 5 per cent. Quarterly Statistical Enquiry Data, Work and Pensions Longitudinal Study.

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