Packagers must be kept in the loop

Over the past few months it has become apparent that lenders are splitting into two camps. On one hand you have firms that are still lending in vast quantities. On the other you have lenders limiting the amounts on offer. Most providers sit somewhere between these extremes.

I understand the reasons for both side’s actions and the challenges lenders face in the prevailing economic conditions.

The market is in turmoil and all lenders have to pitch their propositions carefully to ensure they can manage the challenges they face.

Unfortunately, any lender with an attractive product is inundated with business, which has a knock-on effect on service standards. If there are going to be delays we need to know so we can inform our broker clients.

But we’re finding that lenders with popular products are failing to communicate with us when their service buckles under the strain.

As a packager we need to update brokers about all aspects of their cases, from products and criteria to availability and service levels. If lenders fail to let us know when they’re struggling it makes our job harder.

Packagers need honest and open relationships with lenders. Without this our updates to brokers are fatally flawed.

Regrettably, the days of having a multitude of lenders to choose from and swift no-questions-asked offers have gone. We don’t expect them to return any time soon.

The reality is that offers are taking longer due to lenders’ service problems so expectations must be managed from the outset.

Brokers need to ensure their clients are aware of the current problems hitting the mortgage market.

I’m pleased there are still lenders willing to lend when some of their competitors have pulled out of the fray, but it hasn’t been surprising to find the ones still providing products are having difficulties coping with demand.

The market is fragile and we need to work together to ensure the relationship between pack- agers and lenders remains solid despite the delays.