New entrants chase away Monday blues


Last week that awful Monday morning feeling passed me by. The sunshine had something to do with it but there were other reasons to be cheerful, namely news that two new mortgage lenders – Aldermore and Precise Mortgages – had entered the market.

As someone from the Council of Mortgage Lenders recently admitted, only about half a dozen of its members are lending in any significant volume, so the new entrants aren’t going to make lending leap massively next month.

But after two years in which 10 building societies and a lot more specialist lenders have fallen by the wayside, the launch of these two lenders is a step in the right direction, especially as both will be lending in the buy-to-let market.

Even the announcement the same day of £2bn in public spending cuts didn’t dampen my spirits, although the demise of quangos and cuts in public sector jobs may have a marginal negative impact on arrears and possessions.

I initially thought the scrapping of the Child Trust Fund might raise building society ire. But all Brian Morris, head of savings at the Building Societies Association, could muster by way of response was that “this is disappointing as CTFs are a good way of getting children into the habit of saving”.

One of his colleagues said the CTF had been given up as a lost cause with the change of government and that CTF cash deposits account for only 0.2% of society savings.

So that’s all right then.