It’s time for a sourcing system that offers recompense for mistakes

From Gary Williams

I am the victim of an incorrect KFI generated by a well known sourcing system. I sourced a product for my client and the KFI indicated a partial refund on the valuation fee. As this lender does refund valuation fees on certain products and the generation of KFIs on its website is a lengthy process, I provided my client with the KFI from the sourcing system.

I later discovered the information was incorrect and forwarded the KFI to the sourcing company. It wrote me a delightful letter thanking me for informing it of the situation and stating that it had indeed made a mistake and apologised for the error. The letter also said it would not accept liability as the responsibility for checking the KFI lies with the broker.

This is different from a KFI generated by a lender. I made sure my client was not unhappy with my level of service by pre-empting any dissatisfaction and refunding their valuation fee out of my own pocket.

I understand the argument that every KFI should be obtained from the lender direct but this can take a lot of time and is also particularly difficult to do when visiting a client in their home.

Also I, like many brokers, have numerous passwords, user names and pin numbers and have had to learn the intricacies of many lenders’ websites and their idiosyncrasies. To have a single interface with all these systems would be much more convenient. But unless I am mistaken, the standpoint of the two main candidates for this role is that they will not provide financial recompense for their mistakes. They are neither responsible nor liable for mistakes in the KFIs which their systems generate.

This seems unfair and my confidence in both companies is low due to their stance. Should a company emerge that better understands the reliance brokers place upon it and backs up its confidence in its product with a financial promise to rectify mistakes for which it is to blame, I would support it with my business.

I urge the existing companies to concentrate on this issue before integrating further with any other products or trading platforms.

European, First Title or Norwich Union, for example. They select these insurers on a demands and needs basis as required by the FSA. It is certainly the case in my firm that full KFIs are issued.

Armstrong seems unaware that title insurance comes under the insurance mediation remit and since January 14 it has been a requirement that law firms are regulated by the FSA to conduct this.

Also it is not typical in my experience that a commission is payable for implementing title insurance so I am not sure where Armstrong gets his information. Should a commission be payable, law firms are required to account to the client for this. This has been a Law Society rule for many many years.

I am not sure Armstrong’s proc fees are similarly sent to the client.