60 Seconds with… Darrell Walker, head of product and new business, Prestige Finance

Darrell Walker

Next year will be big for the second charge market. Will regulation affect innovation and the sorts of products on offer, and will it have an effect on price?

The whole industry has its sights set on the roll-out of the Mortgage Credit Directive. The changes to the cooling-off period and the ability for borrowers to pay upfront fees will invite providers to refresh their propositions. I would not be surprised if we also see one or two first charge lenders stretch out into the second charge market once it comes into the same regulatory bracket. This competition will drive innovation and pricing.

How will the second charge distribution landscape be affected by incoming regulation?

Second charge lending will be on a level footing with its first charge alternative, so the distribution landscape is set for a shake-up. But the wider intermediary market will look at the merits of second charge lending in a different light and will soon face an obligation to inform borrowers if a second charge product is available.

What plans does Prestige have up its sleeve? 

With the forward-looking approach of our parent company, OneSavings Bank, and our commitment to listen closely to the needs of our partners, there is plenty of innovation around the corner. We recently launched our second charge buy-to-let range and we have been working hard to enhance our prime and large-loan range to better meet the needs of the intermediary. We have one of the most comprehensive second charge lending propositions in the market but there is more to come.

If you could change the second charge market in one way, how would you do it?

There is so much about our industry that flies under the radar of the broader lending community. I would like to see the wider intermediary market embrace the merits of second charge lending and the opportunities it brings.

If you could be one person from history, who would it be?

Sir Geoff Hurst – the only footballer to score a hat-trick in a World Cup final. 

How would you advise someone joining the market?

Do not be afraid to admit that you are on a constant learning curve. It is crucial to continually update your knowledge.

If you were a superhero, what superpower would you like?

The ability to fly. It would make going on holiday with the kids far easier, not to mention cheaper.  

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