The significance and implications of being a subprime homeowner in the UK
The purpose of this paper is to provide a deeper understanding of the significance and implications of being a subprime homeowner in the UK. The results indicate that subprime individuals represent a mixture of socioeconomic groups, predominantly included in the light adverse and near prime categories of subprime lending, for whom credit adversity is generally a temporary phenomenon, which is likely to represent a transitory event in their lives. These borrowers have been at the heart of the UK subprime mortgage market, actively targeted not only by specialist lenders but also, more crucially, by mainstream players. Whereas for some individuals this market has provided an opportunity to experience the emotional and financial aspects of homeownership positively; for others becoming a subprime mortgage holder has increased the difficulties in their lives, affected their financial capability, and worsened their standards of living. Thus, the impact of the risk–reward mechanisms of subprime products has proved to be a difficult reality for certain socioeconomic groups. Furthermore, given the progressive deterioration in the transparency of the financial services industry, a significant proportion of subprime individuals has, unsurprisingly, struggled to appreciate the reasons why they faced problems in obtaining credit or a mortgage. Keywords: subprime mortgage, homeowner, characteristics, United Kingdom
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