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Is it worth following the advice of so-called experts?

From Brian Humphreys

The January 8 issue of Mortgage Strategy was full of conflicting opinions from experts. Kevin Paterson says the end of the buy-to-let honeymoon is in sight while Rebecca Atkinson says the Bulgarian and Romanian immigrants flooding in will boost buy-to-let.

Lombard Street Research – which correctly predicted a 10% rise in house prices in 2006 – expects a 15% rise in 2007 and Dev Malle forecasts that all forecasts will be wrong.

And it went on. IVAs are on the rise – bad news. But this could boost sub-prime – good news. Single premium policies should be banned. Single premium policies are good. Networks are bad. Networks are good. HIPs are bad. HIPs are good. Equity release is bad. Equity release is good.

For years people have cancelled endowments, claimed compensation and replaced perfectly good plans, often on the advice of so-called experts.

Two years ago a friend of mine asked what he should do with his endowment with 12 years to go. It was about £3,000 down at the time. Not being qualified to advise I said if I had one I would keep it.

Last week he told me his forecast now is for a £3,000 surplus so he is glad he kept it. I wonder how many people are worse off because they followed public opinion.

I used to think brokers were in a strong position because we can give advice but the more I think about it, perhaps banks and building societies have the right idea after all – they give information only and don’t have any comebacks.

Brian Humphreys
1 to 1 Mortgages
By email

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