Mortgages

Advisers say onus is on lenders to contact mortgage prisoners

39% of respondents saying they had dealt with a client who was struggling to remortgage.

Rozi Jones
|
15th March 2019
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" If a lender's affordability criteria means a customer can't product transfer, they should be encouraged to seek advice instead of being left on an expensive SVR."

Advisers believe lenders have a responsibility to proactively contact clients who may be considered mortgage prisoners, according to the fourth survey from Insights, Barcadia Media's independent market research portal.

Attendees at yesterday's Financial Services Expo Glasgow were asked about mortgage prisoners, with 39% of respondents saying they had dealt with a client who was struggling to remortgage.

When asked who is responsible for addressing the issue, 63% said it is the lenders job to contact mortgage prisoners. 26% said that mortgage advisers should contact their clients and just 11% believe it is up to the consumer to make the first move.

Attendees were also asked what they think lenders should be doing to assist mortgage advisers in helping mortgage prisoners to find better deals.

40% said that lenders should signpost mortgage prisoners towards advisers, 36% said they would like to see more specialist products for the demographic, while 24% highlighted the importance of manual underwriting.

Insights has been developed throughout 2018 and makes use of a purpose-built digital platform upon which advisers can share their thoughts, experience and market confidence via monthly surveys.

To join the Insights mailing list and get future market research surveys straight to your inbox, visit www.project-insights.co.uk.

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Financial Reporter editor, Rozi Jones, said: "The FCA recently announced new measures to help mortgage prisoners, but the government later admitted that the rules themselves would not solve the problem and customers' ability to remortgage would be determined by the risk appetite of lenders.

"Economic Secretary to the Treasury, John Glen, said it is "not feasible" to require lenders to offer new products to mortgage prisoners, but it's clear from the Insights research that advisers believe tailored products and manual underwriting are the key to helping these customers remortgage.

"Alongside new products and criteria, the large majority of advisers feel lenders should be doing more to help mortgage prisoners, including signposting them towards regulated advice. If a lender's affordability criteria means a customer can't product transfer, they should be encouraged to seek advice instead of being left on an expensive SVR.

"Lenders representing 93% of the UK residential mortgage market recently agreed common standards to help homeowners affected by stricter mortgage criteria to switch products and we hope this is the start of lenders taking a more proactive approach towards mortgage prisoners."

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