The Asset Management Group believes that asset managers are far better prepared to deal with the level of repossessions thanks to advances in technology, processes and the current focus on Treating Customers Fairly.
2008 was an extremely challenging year for everyone associated with repossessions, with a dramatic increase in the numbers of possessions coupled with a depressed housing market and AMG believes that 2009 will be equally challenging with the Council of Mortgage Lenders predicting possession numbers to reach circa 75,000.
Although parallels are being drawn to the sector in the early 90’s AMG believe that processes, people and the perception of asset management have all made great strides since that time.
Simon Matthews, managing director of AMG, says; “We have not experienced this level of possessions since the early 1990’s however I think the industry as a whole is far better equipped to deal with these volumes.
“I have memories of the early 90’s when processes were manual to the extent that a client would turn up with boxes containing files for hundreds of properties . It’s hard to imagine that world now with our integrated data feeds from lenders and an online operating system that enables clients to review management information remotely.
“We built our own system back in 2004 because we wanted some customised features but generally across the market the intelligent use of technology is widespread. It is also important to recognise that another significant difference from the early 90’s is that AMG have the benefit of a nucleus of senior staff that have literally seen it and done it before.”
TCF practices relating to repossessions is viewed as a step forward for the asset management process although Matthews believes that the principles of TCF are inherent within his business.
He says: “We have always worked in an environment which satisfies the best interest of the Borrower being able to demonstrate best practice in relation to possession sales through evidence of price obtained, speed of sale and the ability to demonstrate that they have chosen the most appropriate estate agents for the property.”