Chris Fairfax

Bridging Watch: The fairest way to apply interest

Lenders adopt a variety of models when determining rates, but which is likely to be the most effective for customers? Understanding the great variations in risk is one of the reasons working in short-term finance is so enjoyable. Each loan is different, representing a unique credit risk profile. So what is the fairest way to […]


Bridging Watch — New lenders: prove your worth

Pricing, risk and process are key to catching the eye of brokers. It feels like a new bridging lender is launching every week. Most recently, City of London Group unveiled Property and Funding Solutions and I have had more than 20 other new players request to be added to our panel in the last six […]

Chris Fairfax

Bridging Watch: Short-term outlook

Pricing for low-LTV, residential bridging has reached inertia after a string of downward corrections last year. It is unlikely to fall further The problem with predictions is that they tend to be full of optimism, particularly at the start of the year when company metrics reset and an opportunity exists to deliver record-breaking sales. But […]

Chris Fairfax

Bridging Watch: Customers can always go elsewhere

As with supermarket customers, brokers tend to stick with one or two brands, so bridgers would do well to diversify The short-term lending sector continues to reflect the development path of UK supermarkets. The likes of Masthaven, Precise, Shawbrook and UTB all raise capital through retail deposits, meaning the cost of capital is low and […]

Chris Fairfax

Secured Loans Watch: Every second counts

If second charge lending is to break the £1bn mark, product diversification and more investment in automation are vital Second charge mortgage completions totalled £889m for the year ending 30 April 2017, which is a two percentage point increase from the previous year. Encouragingly, completions for April alone were £79m – 53 per cent higher […]

Chris Fairfax

Bridging Watch: Time is right for higher LTVs

Offering short-term deals at a higher loan-to-value could mean excellent business so long as it is applied responsibly It is often said that time is the most precious commodity in life. When I think about the reasons why bridging finance has proved increasingly popular, it all boils down to time. Borrowers are buying more time. […]

Chris Fairfax

Bridging Watch: Battle lines are drawn in rates wars

Competition for high-LTV bridging loans is strong, coupled with lower pricing for higher LTVs from ‘lighter touch’ lenders Every day I’m bombarded with emails from bridging lenders and master brokers (including our own) advertising “market-leading rates”. Introducers must now be aware that Precise Mortgages and Shawbrook Bank offer rates from 0.59 per cent per month […]

Chris Fairfax

Bridging Watch: AVMs don’t have mood swings

Automation of valuations within bridging and other specialist sectors is inevitable – and can bring benefits to lenders  Last month the Association of Short Term Lenders reported that bridging lender sentiment had “bounced back considerably” since the EU referendum. Consequentially, a significant percentage of lender members think bridging business volumes will grow over the next […]

Chris Fairfax

My Opinion: How master brokers will survive

Master brokers will survive post-MCD only if they remain relevant and offer value through well-packaged high volumes Two things happened as a result of the consumer protection offered prior to the MCD. First, master brokers were born: essentially a middleman between intermediary or client and the lender, as neither lender nor broker was willing to […]