Thirty years in the industry, the ‘new normal’ in BTL, the pleasure of getting to know businesses ‘inside and out’ – and a new spin on long-standing hobbies
In your new role as managing director of intermediaries at Landbay, what is your main day-to-day focus?
My main focus is making sure the intermediary market is aware of Landbay as we grow.
I genuinely believe we offer an innovative and unique funding solution in the buy-to-let market and I make it my job to communicate this to brokers on a daily basis.
How important are mortgage brokers to the success of the business?
This is my 30th year in the mortgage industry and, having worked on both the lending and broking sides of the business, I know first-hand what a vital role brokers play in the process.
This is even more important when the lending is of a specialist nature; brokers need to collect and communicate a wealth of information to support lenders. I have always backed brokers personally and professionally and will continue to do so at Landbay.
As a buy-to-let lender, what direction do you see the market taking in the next year or so?
The buy-to-let market is moving ever more quickly into the specialist sector of the market.
There will undoubtedly be some turbulence in the next 12 months but I believe this will settle down into what will be classed as the new normal.
What is your favourite part of your job?
Getting to know businesses inside and out.
I am a naturally curious and creative person and, because of this, I love seeing how my colleagues at Landbay have built an innovative business from the ground up, and the mechanics of how we connect with our partners at the major distributors, brokerages, networks and clubs.
I never forget that I am in such a privileged position to see the internal workings of all these organisations and I feel like I learn something from them every day.
What is your hope for the market overall in the next 12 months?
I am heartened to see so many brokers beginning to learn about the new tax rules and PRA changes. However, I hope that all brokers get their head around these changes so that they continue to do a great job for their clients and lenders alike.
If you had not chosen this career path, what else would you have liked to do?
I have two passions in this respect: food and music.
I am a qualified chef and I am a very average musician; I have been known to write the odd ditty. But if I had to choose, I would probably have been a chef lecturer as I enjoy the teaching aspect too.
Who is your all-time hero, and why?
César Ritz. Having experienced the hospitality industry on both the chef and client sides, I always find Ritz’s famous quote rings true. He was the person to coin the phrase ‘Le client n’a jamais tort’ – ‘The customer is never wrong’.
What is the best advice you have received?
Never take people at face value.
Take some time to get to know them and to understand what their values are. The odds are you will have similar values and therefore create a bond.
What do you do in your spare time?
I love to cook and play a little music but recently I have taken up spin classes at the gym. I may be going through a mid-life crisis…
I’m just praying that the gym staff have all had CPR training!
If you were chancellor for a day, what would be your priorities?
To reverse the buy-to-let tax relief changes and remove the additional stamp duty charges for second properties.