View more on these topics

Let’s pay brokers more than lip service

Do lenders value brokers’ business? How hard do they work to secure it? Do they care about brokers and their clients?

The soundbites, straplines and sales pitches used by mortgage lenders strongly suggest they do. But the everyday reality tells a radically different story.

Too many lenders spend hours telling brokers how important their business is while keeping them on hold at one of their inadequately staffed call centres.

Lenders’ marketing would have us believe an efficient personal touch underpins every product yet borrowers are lucky to see their funds within a month.

This is especially true of some of the biggest brands. Too many lack the drive to put their marketing into practice. If they did, developing, implementing and using the latest IT would be at the heart of their propositions.

Over the past decade, specialist lenders and new entrants have been the engines of change in the market. They have invested large sums of cash, taken the time to design systems that work and put management teams in place that are capable of driving efficient, customer-led propositions. While other lenders have changed their processes as the market has evolved, they have been swept along with the tide. Change has been driven more by the need to keep up than a genuine ambition to deliver improved service. As such, they have tended to lag woefully behind the leaders.

Perhaps some lenders do not have the capital or the foresight to centre their administrative departments on the most sophisticated IT. Perhaps they think instant online credit decisions are not the shape of things to come.

There is no problem with this for some cases but when physical valuations are required or a degree of manual underwriting is needed we still complete cases in less than a week. Others regularly take over a month.

The argument runs deeper than IT. It’s more about competence – which some of the biggest lenders have lost, having become bloated and complacent over the years.

Lending in today’s commercial environment is all about delivering a convenient, integrated and quick service to brokers and borrowers. Those that fail to take this into account will soon find themselves extinct. May they rest in peace while the rest of us get on with the job.


Money Partners Touch appoints BDM

Money Partners Touch, the direct-to-broker channel of Money Partners, has promoted James Hope to the role of business development manager for London and the Home Counties.Covering the capital and the areas of Hertfordshire, Essex, Kent, Surrey and Buckinghamshire, Hope will be responsible for actively building relationships with brokers and IFAs.He will report directly to sales […]

Expo may break record despite lender boycott

The Mortgage Business Expo says more than 122 companies have already signed up to exhibit in London despite three major lenders shunning the event. GMAC-RFC has joined BM Solutions and Bristol & West in deciding not to take a stand at Earls Court in November because of concern the show does not represent value for […]

Compliance appointment

Centrepoint has appointed compliance specialist Bill Warren as a non-executive director. Warren is also compliance director at Complete Mortgage and Loan Services

First-timers opt for fixed rates, says CML

The prospect of higher interest rates has led a record number of first-time buyers opting for a fixed rate loan, data from the Council of Mortgage Lenders reveals. Figures show 85% of first-time buyers chose a fixed rate deal in January, which is the highest figure on record, and just over 70% of home movers […]

Champion the small-scale developer

Traditional development finance must price in project and liquidity risk, but if your project is completed and you have begun selling units you could be eligible for cheaper funding, writes Matthew Tooth of Lendinvest. A product which prices purely for liquidity risk is one way to help developers lower their costs. This type of product allows […]


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up