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AfI gets tough on income proof for fast-track

Abbey for Intermediaries will now require brokers to keep proof of income for all fast-track applications for two years, or they could face being banned from using the facility.

AfI currently carries out random monthly sampling checks on brokers that have submitted fast-track transactions.

If a broker fails to prove the client’s income there has up until now been no consequences.

But from March 1, if a broker fails to supply evidence of their client’s income, fast-track will be removed for the individual broker and they will not be paid a proc fee.

Where a broker has been removed for three months they can then reapply for fast-track by signing a document outlining that they understand and agree to the terms of the fast-track requirements.

“We are in the process of campaigning to ensure that fast-track is seen as a valuable service which the intermediary industry as a whole can benefit from.”

A spokesman from AfI

If there was to be a second failure, the broker would be banned from using AfI’s fast-track proposition again.

AfI says that from its past experience brokers have not always kept the client’s proof of income.

A spokesman for AfI, says: “We are in the process of campaigning to ensure that fast-track is seen as a valuable service which the intermediary industry as a whole can benefit from. 

“We’ve proven that, when properly managed, fast-track is not a driver of arrears or repossessions and we are pleased with how fast- track has performed within our business.

“Our recent communications on fast-track are to ensure that as a community we are all working towards the same goal. If you are using the fast-track system as it was designed, i.e., ensuring that you collect and retain satisfactory evidence of income from your customer at point of sale, these changes will not affect you.

“Only people not adhering to our requirements for fast-track applications will be affected by changes we are making”.

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  • D Broker 23rd February 2010 at 4:31 pm

    I suggest they look at the lending practices employed by their branches before reminding us of the need for compliance…

  • dddd 22nd February 2010 at 4:30 pm

    Seriously I don`t see the problem? If the FSA comes knocking do you honestly think they won`t want to see this info? Wake up people!!!! All Abbey are doing is putting something in place you should already be doing to protect yourself.

    FT is a very handy tool for brokers, but if its abused it will go the way of self cert. There are still good S/C cases out there, but the product was so ridiculously abused. When the FSA look at your docs, they won`t care what the lender has asked for, its on you as the advisor to check they can afford it and for them to prove they can!

  • Dan McGeehan 22nd February 2010 at 1:22 pm

    Dont know what the problem is here as Abbey are also protecting us by ensuring all brokers that submit cases to them have proved affordability. We see on mortgage strategy reguarly articles on brokers banned by the FSA and one of the reasons is that they did not keep adequate records. Abbey are giving all brokers notice that it is coming in to force so it is not going to affect past cases.

  • Martin Jackson 22nd February 2010 at 10:36 am

    Who would be a mortgage broker…… ?

  • Mark Stroud 22nd February 2010 at 10:00 am

    I agree they should request dec and income proof on all cases.The tone of the email was awful perhaps every broker should send 6 months pay slips and declarations on all cases regardless of request and let them sort it out.
    I really struggle to find a reason to use this shower!

  • Iain Kilpatrick 22nd February 2010 at 9:50 am

    I think the tone of Abbeys correspondence is really bad. It seems to me they are trying to discredit brokers. Every broker knows it is a FSA requirement to vertify income and expenditure to make sure the Mortgage is affordable.
    Lets not forget the amount of complaints against the banks for bad service & bad advice or non advice. The sooner we have a government to get the banks and the FSA under control the better. Banks do not want brokers, the FSA do not want brokers, however, clients need brokers. We treat clients fairly(TCF).

  • vp73 22nd February 2010 at 9:19 am

    I fully agree with the appualing way AFI has treated brokers since their aquisition by Santander, but can there withdraw a proc fee like this. Surely this goes against TCF? We cannot go to a client and say ‘I wasn’t going to charge you but now I am after the event’. Abbey wil still have recieved the business and the profit on the business over the coming years, so to clawback a proc fee is disgraceful.
    Their stupid 5 day rule to receive underwriting documentaiton is ridiculous too, what if an accountant is on holiday or something similar. Also, they can take as long as they like to process this paperwork though.
    It is all one way traffic with both Santander lenders and I do not use them nless entirely necessary and I have no other choice. I suggest we stand together as an idustry and we all do the same, otherwise it will only get worse and other lenders will start treating us the same (well, they already do really).

  • Martin Jackson 22nd February 2010 at 9:09 am

    Michael, you’re right, everyone is fed up with lenders pushing us around, but in the kingdom of the blind, the one eyed man is king!

    What can we do, we are a disparate lot, like football fans, we can’t take our custom elsewhere because there isn’t anywhere to take it to!

    Lenders have us by the balls, they know it and we know it!

  • Matthew 19th February 2010 at 5:47 pm

    Agree with Neil. All advisers should have income proof on their own file anyway. Fastrack is “lenders” taking the decision not to check evidence of pay, not brokers. However, that said, I think Abbey have a cheek thinking they can audit a case 2 years down the line and request income proof. If you want to check random cases do it following submission.

  • Stuart 19th February 2010 at 5:25 pm

    What is clear now is that Fast track is only of benefit to Abbey themselves in that it enables them to keep their costs down & means they can compete unfairly with their competitors. Puts their campaign to save fast track into perspective doesn’t it!

  • Michael 19th February 2010 at 5:17 pm

    Oh dear.Typical lender reaction ‘the FSA wants to discuss fast tracking ‘ so lets go gung ho and just do away with it anyhow,since they have jsut said they want to talk about it.A gutless, gormless reaction to an out of control regulator.

    They sure as hell wont do this on their direct offering (non advised by the way,which is the real enemy).So one rule for them another for us.

    Don’t know about the rest of you but I’m tired of lenders pushing us around.

  • Neil Williams 19th February 2010 at 4:30 pm

    I cant believe so many brokers are leaving themselves wideopen to scutiny by not taking evidence of income and retaining it for every client-Fools springs to mind!!

  • Nick Hopkins Mortgage Broker 19th February 2010 at 4:30 pm

    If you ever needed a reason (there has been many in the past) not to use Abbey, you now you have a great one.
    Iam fed up of lazy lenders not underwriting properly and trying to pass the buck back to us, the broker. Either underwrite properly or I suggest you pull fastrack completely.
    Iam also insulted at the tone of the statement issued from abbey.
    Why dont you pull fasttrack completely? I know why because you need it to streamline your underwriting. I think you need it more than brokers do!

  • David Tyler 19th February 2010 at 4:24 pm

    This is a surprising statement to most brokers I imagine. Who have AFI been dealing with? It is worrying that they think a “campaign” is necessary. I, and any other professional broker, will always keep proof of income on file. I am sure the FSA expect that!

  • John Wilson 19th February 2010 at 4:23 pm

    Does this also apply to Abbey/Santander branch advisers?
    I do not think so!!

  • Simon 19th February 2010 at 4:21 pm

    I thought it was a FSA requirement to have evidence of a clients income and expenditure so as to show that the mortgage is affordable for the client.

  • anon 19th February 2010 at 4:14 pm

    Abbey should quit trying to put the onus on brokers. If they want proof of income, then they should ask for it for EVERY application and forget fast-track alltogether. What is the use otherwise?

    Just another example of Abbey’s apalling behaviour to brokers who have been their lifeblood for years. Cros selling, dual pricing, contacting clients 6m before their current deal ends and atrocious service are all to blame.

    Its not worth the apalling proc fees and service.

    Santander management should take note of this.

  • Derek Frost 19th February 2010 at 4:13 pm

    Why wait, let’s have the declaration for signing now. The sooner responsibility is formalised the better in my opinion!

  • John Wilson 19th February 2010 at 4:12 pm

    Does this also apply to Abbey/Santander branch advisers?
    I do not think so!!