Spoilers could greet edeus

KENSINGTON Mortgages and GMAC-RFC are both believed to be planning spoilers for edeus\' September launch.

Kensington is thought to have a technology bombshell in the pipe-line while GMAC-RFC is expected to unveil its own point-of-sale offer proposition, widely touted as being the feather in edeus’ cap.

GMAC-RFC has made no secret of the fact that it intends to introduce POS-O by the end of 2006. But now some industry sources are speculating that it wants to have this up and running as early as September to coincide with edeus’ launch on September 14.

It is thought that the General Motors subsidiary will phase the system in through selected key account packagers.

Edeus had been widely tipped to be the first to make it to the market with this type of technology, al-though others were expected to follow suit.

One packager, who asked to remain nameless, says: “GMAC-RFC wants to launch its POS-O in September through selected large packagers before extending this to the rest of its packager partners at the end of the year. But the timing is probably coincidental – GMAC-RFC isn’t trying to beat edeus to the market.”

Another packager source says: “It’s taken GMAC-RFC a while to wake up and realise that sooner is better than later. It wants to connect to packagers’ systems now rather than next year. This is what it’s all about now for lenders – getting the IT right.”

Peter Izard, sen-ior manager of corporate accounts at GMAC-RFC, says it is working on launching its pro-position to packagers and brokers by the end of the year but can’t confirm exactly when it will go live.

He adds: “Technology is a big part of our proposition but it’s more important to get our proposition right than be the first to market.”

Martin Reynolds, director of corporate accounts at edeus, says: “For us it’s not about being first to the market with a proposition.

“We are looking to launch our POS-O system in September but this won’t be phased in – it will be available to everyone.”

Kensington Mortgages declined to comment.

Tory leader David Cameron plans to revolutionise the Right to Buy market by allowing every council tenant the right to have their rent payments converted into mortgage repayments.

Should the Conservatives be elected and implement this proposal it would give a considerable boost to the already buoyant Right to Buy market.

Cameron says: “Right to Buy wasn’t just about individual aspirations to own property, it was about creating mixed communities. It made Britain more socially mobile and improved neighbourhoods. But what about those who got left behind? This scheme would create a new generation of home owners.”

Paul Hunt, head of marketing at Platform, welcomes the news.

He says: “Right to Buy has been a fantastic success but we must learn the lessons of the past. Not everyone wants to buy their own home. There must be an adequate supply of housing available so choice is not restricted.”

Cameron admits there are some drawbacks to his dream of a property- owning democracy but adds that the scheme will empower local councils to build more social housing to replace homes used up in the scheme.

He says: “Millions will be able to own houses and have an asset for life.”

Paul Broadhead, deputy-general of the Association of Home Information Pack Providers, says the idea is fine in theory but there are many questions to answer.

He says: “Will the Tories underwrite these people and will they even qualify? It seems irresponsible to saddle people in social housing with this kind of debt.”