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A lesson in evolution

The mortgage market experienced a minor earthquake last week. You may not have felt it and it certainly won’t have registered on the Richter scale but PMS’ decision to change what the trading style stands for, from Premier Mortgage Service to Protection, Mortgages & Savings, was seismic in its way.

Love it or loathe it, there’s no getting away from the fact that PMS has an 11% share of the gross mortgage market – including direct lenders – and up to 20% of the broker market. When a company like that changes a trading style that has been around since 1996, you know something’s up.

The mortgage market has changed radically in the past year. If the Council of Mortgage Lenders’ predictions for 2009 are on the money we’re looking at a sector in which just £145bn worth of mortgages are completed this year. Compared with the £345bn completed in 2007, that’s horrifying.

PMS has been banging on about protection and diversifying into other business areas for the past 18 months and the name change merely acknowledges the fact that mortgages are no longer its sole focus.

You should be looking at your own business and thinking the same thing. Despite the Competition Commission’s ruling on how mortgage payment protection insurance will be sold in future, insurance sales should be an integral part of your business from now on. The mortgage market is contracting and there’s no point sticking your head in the sand and thinking otherwise. Whether your firm is big or small the old adage rings true – things must change if they are to remain the same.

It is vital that you adapt to the changing market now to ensure your business has a future.


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