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Secured loans standards body shuts up shop after 30 years

The Finance Industry Standards Association, the self-regulatory and standards body for the secured loan sector is to close its doors after 30 years.

The association has blamed unprecedented conditions in the credit markets for its demise and says the large number of lenders and brokers leaving the market has had a severe effect on its finances.

The FISA board considered a range of options to enable it to continue, one of which was to allow members to increase the amount of fees they pay.

But in the end it decided that the best course would be a managed transfer of activity to industry trade bodies the Finance and Leasing Association, which represents lenders, and the Association of Finance Brokers, which represents brokers.

In future, senior FLA and AFB representatives will meet regularly – probably quarterly – so dialogue can be maintained.

FISA also operates a panel of surveyors approved to carry out valuations.

Discussions are currently underway with the FLA on taking over FISA’s database its Foundation training course.

Phil Nunnerley, chairman of FISA, said: “Since it was set up in 1989 our organisation has delivered considerable value in terms of providing advice and guidance to brokers and lenders as well as in helping consumers.

“But the regulatory landscape is changing and the industry is shrinking. The arrangement we have come to with the FLA and the AFB mean the industry will continue to receive the advice and support it needs.”

All FISA staff are currently under notice of redundancy and the association is scheduled to close on April 14.

Lord Adair Turner, chairman of the Financial Services Authority recently announced that the regulator is considering regulating secured loans.

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