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BSA calls for government debate on MMR

The Building Societies Association is calling for a government debate over the future of the mortgage market before the Mortgage Market Review is enacted, as it responds to the Financial Services Authority’s Responsible Lending Consultation.

The BSA argues that it is not the role of the FSA to bring forward rule changes that would have a profound effect on the housing market, social mobility and aspirant homeowners.

Paul Broadhead, head of mortgage policy, says: “The proposals in the responsible lending consultation could have far reaching consequences in relation to the wider economy. It is for the Government to provide a clear plan of their housing policy objectives. It will then be imperative to assess whether regulatory proposals facilitate the desired outcomes for UK consumers or present further obstruction.

“It is not the role of appointed regulatory officials to determine the shape of such a major part of the UK economy, nor is it their role to attempt to control demand through prescriptive and restrictive conduct of business rules.

“This is the role of elected representatives and we would urge the Government to make this debate a priority.”

He says mutual lenders have a good track record of responsible lending but many of the proposals are a ‘one size fits all’ approach which attempt to shoehorn mutuals into large bank processes.

Broadhead adds: “Competition and diversity are of vital importance to ensure a sustainable and vibrant market, which offers choice for consumers. A market dominated by a small number of large banks is not desirable in the long term and does not meet the FSA objectives of a sustainable and flexible market.”



Guide: how to change your auto-enrolment support

As we approach the two-year milestone of auto-enrolment, employers have had the opportunity to truly assess the capabilities of their chosen support. They are also now realising that getting to the staging date was the easy part, and that support is required for almost every aspect of the day to day running of their scheme. With the three-year re-enrolment window coinciding for many with the total removal of commission and Active Member Discounts from pension-related products and services, as well as the introduction of the pension charge cap in April 2015, many employers will have no choice but to review their support options. But, what is involved in transitioning your auto-enrolment scheme away from your current support options? This guide from Johnson Fleming aims to outline some of these key areas and provide information and discussion points on what you need to consider.


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