I was surprised by the response generated by John Malone’s recent comments that brokers should be diligent about who they deal with whether this be borrowers, introducers and particularly solicitors.
Recently I have written about mortgage fraud and why brokers should be careful about protecting themselves from being used by people hell-bent on defrauding lenders.
I have no doubt that some innocent brokers have been removed from lenders’ panels because they have been inadvertently used by fraudsters.
If an intermediary gets a reputation for accepting business without making any apparent checks, it will only be a matter of time before word spreads and other fraudsters make them a target.
I do not believe that Malone was suggesting brokers take over the responsibility of checking solicitors, he was giving tips that were about good house-keeping and being diligent.
Obviously, it is up to brokers whether they take heed of any of this advice. But in my book Malone has a good understanding of the market and has done a lot of good work over the years.
Getting back to the point about solicitors, a simple phone call to the lender of your choice about whether the chosen solicitor is on its panel or not doesn’t seem to be too onerous.
It will probably save advisers time and effort in the long run.