In the Spotlight with Rob Stanton, Landbay

We spoke to Rob Stanton, business development director at Landbay, about the main challenges facing the buy-to-let sector, the biggest opportunities for brokers in the next 12 months, and how Landbay is responding to opportunities in the current market.

Related topics:  In The Spotlight,  Mortgages
Rozi Jones | Editor, Barcadia Media Limited
19th May 2023
Rob Stanton, business development director, Landbay
"It’s been a part of the market for 30 years - it’s mature, it’s seasoned and been resilient through many economic crises."

FR: What is your role at Landbay?

My role at Landbay is business development director which sees me leading the BDM teams across the country and helping to develop our strategy, our pricing and our criteria, with the ultimate goal of growing lending and the overall proposition of Landbay.

It’s a newly created role which I started at the beginning of the year and ensures we’re driving everything forward to support our broker partners and their clients.

FR: What is your background?

Prior to the new role, I was head of sales at Landbay and a regional account manager before that. I started my career with Paragon as a mortgage underwriter, which gave me a real understanding of both a broker and lender perspective on underwriting cases. Later on, I moved into more of a sales role with Paragon as a regional account manager.

Across almost 20 years, those underwriting skills really helped me grow relationships with brokers. They had confidence in me to say yes or no to a deal they wanted to discuss with the lender. The combination of internal experience underwriting and externally from a sales side helped me develop a pretty rounded skillset and a real insight into what brokers needed.

Away from work, I live in Solihull with my wife and two children and I’m a season ticket holder with Aston Villa. That was harder to admit at the start of the season, but we’re doing well at the moment so I’m happy to say I’m a Villa fan.

FR: What are the main challenges facing the buy-to-let market?

There’s so many variables at the moment creating complex challenges for landlords and brokers, whether it’s interest rates and the impact on affordability, the reduction in capital gains, the reversal of the dividend tax cuts or the proposed changes to the EPC requirements.

Challenges though also present greater opportunities, and we’re seeing that with landlords taking up the opportunity to purchase at a competitive price which helps the yield. There’s also talk in the market that buy-to-let is dead, but it’s so far away from that, especially with sustained tenant demand and strong rental yields reported across the country. Above all though, it’s been a part of the market for 30 years - it’s mature, it’s seasoned and been resilient through many economic crises.

FR: What are the biggest opportunities for brokers in the next 12 months?

Just like in the wider market, 2023 marks a huge year for mortgage maturity in the buy-to-let sector. With increased demand for remortgage advice, there’s a massive opportunity for brokers to get close to their clients. That experience of brokers and the specialist advice they can offer is so important to landlords at the moment, especially with rates and criteria changing on a daily basis.

FR: What can we expect from Landbay for the remainder of the year?

We’ll continue to be innovative and agile to make sure we have the correct products and criteria for our brokers to support their landlords. Having our own system means we can move very quickly and respond to opportunities in the market not serviced by other lenders.

We can also change products much faster too, bringing a product to market in days while others may take weeks. That agility and system enhancement built over the past two years is paying dividends in delivering that extra market share to be really competitive in the market.

Our five-year fixed-rate with the three-year ERC is a great example of that innovation. We saw the market wanting a shorter term fixed-rate but due to affordability issues, it hasn’t been possible to achieve it. This product offers the best of both and even in the few shorts weeks the product has been live, the response has been really positive from brokers.

We’ll be looking at the market closely and taking feedback from brokers when they see something that lenders aren’t offering. If it makes sense for all parties, it’s something we’ll look to try and implement.

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