FSA censures Coventry broker

The Financial Services Authority has censured Mohammed Habib for failing to ensure his customers received suitable advice.

The Coventry-based broker trading as MAH Mortgage and Finance must also pay for an independent review of his past business, compensate customers if appropriate and must stop providing regulated mortgage advice.

The FSA found various failings which exposed customers to the risk of being recommended mortgages which were unsuitable or they could not afford.

The FSA say between October 31 2004 and January 11 2008 Habib failed to assess, or record that he had assessed, his customers’ ability to pay the mortgage he recommended.

He also failed to provide proof that self-cert mortgages he recommended were appropriate for the customer also recommended lending into retirement without assessing the customer’s ability to pay after retirement. He did not record why he had made that recommendation.

Jonathan Phelan, head of retail enforcement at the FSA, says: “Customers need to be confident that when they seek mortgage advice they can trust the recommendations made to them.

“We will continue to take disciplinary action against mortgage brokers who cannot demonstrate that the products they recommend are affordable”

Habib was censured as he is unable to pay the proposed financial penalty of £22,500.

As part of the disciplinary action Mr Habib must undertake an independent compliance review of his business to assess whether there has been any customer detriment and provide redress where appropriate.

All of Habib’s permissions have been withdrawn so he can no longer conduct any regulated mortgage business.