Mortgage lenders have offered over 1.6 million mortgage payment holidays to homeowners impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, according to figures from UK Finance.
One in seven mortgages are now covered by payment holidays following steps taken by lenders to help households whose finances have been affected by the crisis. For the average mortgage holder, the payment holiday amounts to £755 per month of suspended payments.
Lenders have also begun giving mortgage holders on payment holidays the ability to switch to a new deal at the end of their term.
Commenting on the issue, Stephen Jones, CEO of UK Finance, said: 'Lenders understand that many households are seeing their finances squeezed due to the coronavirus pandemic and we are working hard to help customers get through these tough times.
'The industry has acted quickly to support homeowners through this crisis and has taken decisive steps to ensure that eligible customers on payment holidays due to COVID-19 can opt for the security of fixing their monthly mortgage payments going forward.
'There is a range of support available to mortgage holders concerned about their finances. We would encourage any homeowners impacted by coronavirus to visit their lender's website in the first instance to find out more information and how to apply.'