The Association of Short Term Lenders (ASTL) has called for ongoing dialogue with the Treasury.

The association wrote to the Treasury proposing collaboration on any potential extension to the enforcement moratorium, following the latest national lockdown.

Within the letter, the ASTL said: “The health of the nation is paramount, and no member would knowingly seek to repossess a domestic residence where health concerns continue.

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“With this in mind, we would like to repeat our assertion that a broad-brush approach to mortgage lending enforcement when it comes to measures such as this is ultimately detrimental to customer choice and access to finance.

“The initial moratorium came to an end in September and, while there have been no physical repossessions since, this has allowed for the progression of actions, where there has been legitimate cause, to a point where repossession might take place subject to the decisions of the court and when the wider health environment improves.

“Put simply, it has enabled the courts to make decisions on the correct course of action, based on the specific circumstances of an individual case.

“By enabling the machinery of the process to operate in this way, it has gone some way to allay the long-term liquidity concerns for some lenders and also mitigated against further logjams in the court system in the future.”

Vic Jannels, chief executive of the ASTL, spoke of the letter: “The bridging and development loans advanced by our members are a crucial source of finance for many thousands of SMEs and property developers, as well as private individuals and will be in even greater need following the end of CBILS and BBLS.

“With this in mind, we believe any extension to the moratorium will significantly slow down the recovery that all stakeholders are working towards.”