Pack behaviour

From Phil Womack

I have followed the recent exchanges of views between Mortgages PLC, Birmingham Midshires Solutions and various other industry figures with much interest and feel that the time is now right to air my own opinion and declare my support for the stance taken by Mortgages PLC and, in particular, by Peter Beaumont.

I would question some of the statements made and some of the facts quoted by Michael Bolton. Synergy Mortgage Processing is a packaging company with no direct-to-consumer function. Intermediaries use us as an additional resource to help provide a high-quality service to their customers, relying on our depth of knowledge and experience in the non-conforming market. We and other similar packagers exist purely due to customer demand and, by attempting to discredit the packaging community, Bolton is, in fact, discrediting the people who use packagers i.e., intermediaries; the very same intermediaries he would appear to wish to attract.

Bolton also appears to wish to discredit an industry that everyone concerned has worked tirelessly to develop into a mature and ethical market. He has claimed that proc fees of 8% are available in the sub-prime market. When challenged, he back-tracked that this related to the second charge market. BM Solutions is not involved in the second charge market and, as far as I am aware, have no intention of being so – so why the comparison?

It is clear from our past dealings with BM Solutions that its underwriting and processing teams are ill-equipped to deal with fully packaged non-conforming applications. If these teams are now to be swamped with applications that do not fit criteria, how long will it be before packagers outside the &#39chosen few&#39 are recognised for the important role they play?

I cannot help wondering if, by publicly ring-fencing what appear to be fourteen of the largest packagers in the market, BM Solutions has simply sought to protect its short-term business volumes.

I value intermediaries highly, they have a tough job and, in the main, do it extremely well. They should deal with lenders directly, use mortgage clubs and a number of packagers when assessing their client needs. Market forces will then ensure those of us who are involved in providing mortgage solutions to intermediaries remain competitive, transparent and ethical.

As a packaging partner of Mortgages PLC, it pleases me to see it take such a public stance in support of the packager market. Packagers offer expertise and experience in the sub-prime market that many brokers are simply not able to develop as they do not specialise in sub-prime lending.

Phil Womack

Group director of sales

Synergy Mortgages

By email