Abbey reports 33% increase in new business in one week

Abbey for Intermediaries says it’s seen a 33 per cent increase in business since the launch of its new range last Friday.

The intermediary lender for Santander UK says the spike in new business has been driven by strong demand for its two-year 2.79 per cent deal for all key accounts.

The product, which Abbey says is available to 95 per cent of the broker market, comes with a £995 fee and is available to both homebuyers and remortgagers up to 60 per cent LTV, with a maximum loan size of £1m.

It also slashed its main residential range by 0.75 per cent last week and its buy-to-let range by up to 1.04 per cent.

Trinity Financial’s head of communications, marketing and products Aaron Strutt says that it’s understandable considering the product is a genuine best buy in the market.

He says: “It has a lower arrangement fee compared to West Bromwich and HSBC’s direct deals. It makes a change as Abbey has been out of the best buy tables for a while and this is not something brokers are used to.”

At the end of July Santander UK, Abbey’s parent group, reported that its gross mortgage lending had fallen to £8.7bn in the first half of 2012, down from £9.7bn in the same period of 2011. Its market share of gross mortgage lending had also shrunk from 15.2 per cent to 12.9 per cent. There was also £2.8bn negative net lending due to a managed reduction in the mortgage stock.

The half year report went on to say that the expectation for the second half iof 2012 was a further managed reduction in the mortgage stock and a lower market share.

It said that the proportion of mortgage applications made through the branch network increased, with an associated reduction in the intermediary channel. It said this reflected a planned shift to strengthen customer relationships and doing more business face to face.

But Abbey’s managing director Miguel Sard says he’s been delighted to see the appetite among brokers for the products and that service wise both residential and buy-to-let products have an average time to offer of 10 days.

He says: “Our key account exclusive has been extremely popular with both homebuyers and remortgagers looking for a market leading rate in today’s challenging economic conditions.”