SMI should be charged at commercial interest rates

Philip Booth is quoted in the Financial Times

Philip Booth was quoted on plans by the Department for Work and Pensions to reform mortgage interest protection. At present, unemployed homeowners can claim Support for Mortgage Interest (SMI) to help them keep up payments and avoid eviction.

Philip said it was important that the loan was a first charge on the property and charged at commercial interest rates “so as to not undermine a market for commercial insurance or mortgage rescheduling on commercial terms by lenders”.

"It is difficult to see a case for a general unconditional welfare benefit for mortgage interest being given by the government,” he added.

You can read the full FT article here.