View more on these topics

When lenders compete, brokers win

This year’s Benchmark Study on lender technology shows lenders becoming increasingly innovative which means the true winners will be brokers, says Frank Eve

The 2006 Benchmark Study on lender intermediary technology was finalised last week and the results are now available. This information has been compiled for the past five years but this year’s study is the most interesting yet, both in terms of technological development and variety of lenders.

The study includes information on the instant offer technology provided by GMAC-RFC and edeus, and also on Origo’s joint forum which is looking at ways to introduce data standards to the mortgage industry.

This year the study saw participation from 31 mortgage lenders, an increase on last year’s 24, making it the most comprehensive review of lenders’ intermediary technology in the market.

Earlier this year a cross-section of prominent intermediaries were invited to a technology forum to verify the study methodology and ensure intermediary, broker and packager needs were reflected in the questions.

Lenders were then sent a questionnaire that focussed on the functionality highlighted by the forum. The functionality detailed by each lender was scored using information from the intermediary forum and the scores were presented in a table of results.

The research findings will be used by Mortgage Strategy as the basis for its Technology Service Awards to be held at the Mortgage Business Expo in London on November 15. These have become the most important technology-based awards in the industry and this year they have been extended to include awards for the IT companies that provided the technology to the Gold Award lenders. This year, GMAC-RFC and edeus will receive awards for innovation and 18 will be awarded the Gold Standard.

GMAC-RFC and edeus are the only lenders in the study to have point-of-sale instant binding offers without the use of physical valuations, using instead links to automated valuation models.

But 15 lenders say they have plans to launch an instant offer facility using an AVM and four indicated that they would launch this functionality within the next three months. This suggests that intermediary distribution technology is set for a big change next year.

When asked if they were going to subscribe to Origo’s Unipass system, 10 lenders said they were and eight lenders said that they were considering joining. This indicates a major shift in thinking by lenders and it looks like the Unipass system will be in use in the mortgage market by early next year.

Seventeen lenders in the study indicated that they were already members of the Origo joint forum and another three said they were considering joining. This suggests that the industry is taking steps towards working together to provide standards and increase the opportunity for the interoperability of systems in the future.

With this level of activity and investment in distribution technology, the true winners will be intermediaries and their clients who will benefit from faster and easier access to mortgage funding.


Let your fingers do the driving

Brokers will get the chance to show off their racing skills on the stands of Lehman Brothers’ UK mortgage businesses at the Mortgage Business Expo in London next week. The three brands – London Mortgage Company, Preferred and Southern Pacific Mortgage Limited – will be running a Scalextric competition on their stands. At the end […]

Leeds launches long term fixed rate product

Leeds has launched a new 10-year fixed rate mortgage of 4.99%.The mortgage has no higher lending charge, is available up to 90% LTV and allows 10% capital repayments each year without penalty. There is also a fee free version for customers who require help with fees.Karen Wint, head of marketing and PR, says: “With market […]

Helping the property development virgins

It is normally a sign of a buoyant housing market that more and more people try to make a quick buck by getting involved in property development.

Lenders start to offer long-term mortgage offers research shows that nearly a third of lenders offer maximum mortgage terms of 40 years or more. Lenders only offering maximum mortgage terms of 25 years are being replaced by long-term offers. Only 23% of the 126 mortgage lenders and products analysed by limit maximum terms for mortgages to 25 years.Tesco is offering […]

Guide cover

Guide: Johnson Fleming produces auto-enrolment checklist

For a job as big as managing the auto-enrolment changes, it’s important to know what has been completed and what still lies in front of you to give you the reassurance that everything is in hand. Getting the planning and project management right at the outset can help you see the path ahead and ensure everyone knows their roles and responsibilities. To help with this, Johnson Fleming has produced a checklist outlining every step that needs to be taken when preparing for auto-enrolment.


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up