Beware fraudulent lenders, says ASTL

The Association of Short Term Lenders is warning brokers to steer clear of unscrupulous bridging lenders that are demanding non-refundable application fees then not following through on deals.

Adrian Bloomfield, chief executive of ASTL, says: “It has been brought to our attention that some firms appear to be charging applicants substantial application fees in relation to short-term loans that do not materialise.”

He urges brokers to use ASTL members to avoid such problems.

Ryneveld van der Horst, finance director at Bridging-loans.com, an ASTL member, says: “This practice is not widespread but it only takes one or two disreputable lenders to give the rest a bad name.”

Roger Morris, business development manager at Affirmative Finance, a member of ASTL, says it is not surprising that some lenders are acting in this way due to the economic climate.

He says: “We are transparent in our dealings with brokers but I am not surprised that some lenders are taking clients’ money under false pretences.”