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Friday Friday, April 17, 2015 News

Connells chief Stuart Flavell retires

Connells chief executive Stuart Flavell has retired after spending the whole of his 38-year career with the company.

It's time to use public land

To radically increase housing supply the UK must utilise public land, economist Dame Kate Barker has said at the Council of Mortgage Lenders Annual Lunch in London.

Paradigm hosts Sheffield event

Paradigm Mortgage Services is hosting its own half-day mortgage and protection event in Sheffield designed to help advisers up their business levels.

Desperate Brits relying on debt

Two thirds (66%) of Brits are currently struggling with unsecured borrowing and a further quarter (25%) expect to take on more debt to cope this year, research from MoneySuperMarket has found.

Lloyds Bank cuts high LTV rates

Lloyds Bank has cut rates on its 90% LTV 2 and 5-year fixes by 0.30%.

TSB unveils 3-year fixed range

TSB has launched a range of 3-year fixed rate products – including a 60% LTV deal at 1.99% with a £995 fee.

Halifax unveils 2-year fix

Halifax Intermediaries has launched a 90% LTV 2-year fixed rate product for homemovers at 4.14% with a £1,499 fee and 4.29% with a £999 fee.

Cost of moving up 60pc in a decade

The cost of moving home has increased by 60% in a decade to nearly £12,000 once estate agency fees and conveyancing costs are taken into account.

March housing growth at 16-month low

Annual house price growth hit a 16-month low of 5.6% in March driven by a slowdown in the South, the LSL England and Wales House Price Index has revealed.

Thursday Thursday, April 16, 2015 News

Hometrack signs 3-year deal with Virgin Money

Hometrack has been appointed as Virgin Money’s valuation service provider for the next three years.

RICS: Market flatlines in March

Buyer enquiries and house sales were static in March due to the uncertainty surrounding the result of the general election, the RICS UK Residential Market Survey has revealed.

TSB trims rates

TSB has cut its mortgage rates across its range of 2-year and 5-year deals – offering a fee free -year remortgage fix at 1.89% to 60% LTV.

DM Hall expands team

Scotland-based DM Hall Chartered Surveyors has appointed a new director, four associates from within the business and hired two more surveyors.

Half of over-40s consider buy-to-let

Nearly half (45%) of over-40s are considering investing in buy-to-let to boost their retirement income.

FCA to ban insurance broker

The Financial Conduct Authority has been given the green light to ban former insurance broker Stephen Robert Allen from conducting regulated activities.

Virgin Money joins MCI Mortgage Club panel

Virgin Money has been added to the MCI Mortgage Club panel where it will join Nationwide, Coventry Building Society, NatWest and Lloyds Banking Group.

Masthaven revamps range

Masthaven Finance has revamped its product range and lowered its minimum loan size from £50,000 to £30,000 as it looks to bring innovation to the market.

Impending election keeps first-time buyers away

Cautious first-time buyers stayed away from the market in March in response to the impending general election in May, e.surv’s latest Mortgage Monitor has revealed.

Wednesday Wednesday, April 15, 2015 News

MBE Leeds stands sell out

All of the exhibitor stands at next week’s Mortgage Business Expo Leeds have sold out.

Brokers Promised personal underwriter

Promise Solutions has launched Active Manager – where brokers are allocated a personal underwriter to oversee the case behind the scenes.

Holloway Friendly launches breast cancer app

Holloway Friendly and ifapps have launched a critical illness breast cancer support policy for both Apple and Android devices.

Stonebridge launches marketing tool

Stonebridge Group has unveiled Revolution Touchpoint – a tool enabling firms to easily generate their own marketing material using templates.

The Mansfield launches fixes

The Mansfield Building Society has launched two 80% LTV 2-year fixed rated products for house purchase and remortgage.

Two thirds of B2L loans for remortgaging

Remortgage loans accounted for two thirds (66%) of all vanilla buy-to-let transactions in the first quarter of 2015, the Mortgages for Business Complex Buy to Let Index has revealed.

TMA unveils 'inspire' campaign

TMA has launched a campaign asking people within the industry what inspires them to work in mortgages.

Crystal Mortgages becomes Crystal Specialist Finance

Crystal Mortgages has rebranded as Crystal Specialist Finance to reflect the depth and breadth of its offering.

Tuesday Tuesday, April 14, 2015 News

UK rents rise 10pc

UK rents have increased by 10.2% from the year before – with the South West (13.7%) and Greater London (8.9%) leading the way.

NACFB to show ‘power of lending’

The NACFB’s Commercial Finance Expo on 17 June will demonstrate the ‘power of lending’ as the industry gathers under one roof, its chief executive Adam Tyler has said.

Towergate Financial rebrands with Wren Sterling

Towergate Financial has rebranded with the launch of Wren Sterling after a successful management buyout was completed three weeks ago alongside John Charcol.

Fleet adds Intrinsic to panel

Fleet Mortgages has added Intrinsic Network to its distribution panel.

Whittaker: Deflation favours buy-to-let

As the UK looks in danger of plunging into deflation “buy-to-let will be a clear winner from this brave new world”, David Whittaker, managing director of Mortgages for Business, has predicted.

Buy-to-let is strongest yearly performer

Buy-to-let performed strongly year-on-year to February 2015 in contrast to the rest of the housing market, the Council of Mortgage Lenders has revealed

Northern Ireland drives annual house price growth

House price growth increased by 7.2% in February driven by a 14.2% increase in Northern Ireland, The Office for National Statistics House Price Index has revealed.

Conservatives would extend right-to-buy

David Cameron has unveiled plans to extend right-to-buy to allow 1.3 million families in housing association properties to buy their own home.

Help to Buy ISA to shorten saving times

Couples saving for a deposit will be able to get on the property ladder 10 months sooner thanks to the Help to Buy ISA, the Mortgage Advice Bureau has estimated.

Valuations reach 8-year high in March

There were more property valuations in March 2015 than any month since 2007, research from Connells Survey and Valuation has revealed.

Monday Monday, April 13, 2015 News

Target doubles profits

Target Group has more than doubled its yearly profits from £2.2m in 2013 to £5.5m in 2014.

Close Brothers sponsors NACFB

Close Brothers Business Finance will sponsor the NACFB Commercial Finance Expo in Birmingham.

Short-term trackers are 30pc cheaper

The lowest rate 60% LTV 2-year tracker has fallen by 30% since October 2014 from 1.44% to just 0.99%, Mortgage Brain has discovered from its quarterly product data analysis.

Demand surges for 2-year buy-to-lets

Demand for 2-year fixed rate buy-to-let products have increased by 35% from Q4 2014 to Q1 2015, the Buy to Let Club and its broker brand The Buy to Let Business have found.

Robert Sinclair to provide seconds guidance

V Loans and AMI chief executive Robert Sinclair will team up to guide brokers on the impact of second charge regulation which comes into play from March 2016.

Mayfair completes £2.4m loan

Mayfair Bridging has completed a loan worth £2.4m where the borrower was settling with a high street bank for the misselling of an interest rate hedging product on their loan.

PMS partners with Newcastle

PMS, part of Sesame Banking Group, has partnered up with Newcastle Building Society’s intermediary arm, NBSIS.

Teachers launched fixes

Teachers Building Society has launched three fixed rate mortgages – including a 3-year fix at 3.69% to 80% LTV for contract teachers.

Simon Stern joins Fluent Money

Second charge legend Simon Stern has joined Fluent Money as non-executive director.

FOS slams HSBC for over-40s snub

HSBC was forced to compensate a couple after denying them a £250,000 mortgage on the grounds of the husband being over 40, The Sunday Times reported.

Lindsay Ross joins Blimey Loans

Banking stalwart Lindsay Ross has joined specialist packager Blimey Loans as commercial lending manager.

Mortgage prisoners deserve better

The loss of the FCA’s transitional rules is an extraordinary decision which has gone largely uncontested, Dudley Building Society’s chief Jeremy Wood has said.

Bridging reached £80.5m in Q1

Gross bridging lending reached £80.5m in the first quarter of 2015 with an average term of 11 months, average LTV of 50% and an average interest rate of 0.95%, the first Bridging Trends set of data reveals today, writes Robyn...

SPECIAL FEATURE: The property market is about to take off

Eric Curran, managing partner of DM Hall Chartered Surveyors, considers what will happen to the property market this year.


Phil Whitehouse, managing director, MCI Mortgage Club, argues that if you are a good broker then you will succeed regardless of whether you choose the AR or DA route.

Buy-to-let returns beat all asset classes

A comparative analysis of returns for buy-to-let and other major asset classes since 1996 shows buy-to-let was the best investment, returning just under 1,400%.

Friday Friday, April 10, 2015 News

Sixty Plus MD pulls plug on Bower acquisition

Sixty Plus managing director David Wright has pulled the plug on its planned acquisition by Bower Retirement Services due to being ‘too emotionally connected’ to his adviser firm.

Lib Dems unveils Help to Rent

The Liberal Democrats wants to offer government loans to young people to pay for rental deposits should they get back into power.

Iain Smith confirms Bank of Ireland UK job

Iain Smith has formerly joined Bank of Ireland UK as head of corporate accounts, bringing with him over 25 years of experience in the mortgage and lending markets.

Seconds volumes surge by a quarter

Second charge mortgage lending has increased by a quarter (24%) in the 12 months to February 2015 from the year before, figures from the Finance and Leasing Association have revealed.

YBS launches three-year fix with cashback

Yorkshire Building Society has launched a three-year fixed-rate mortgage at 1.99% with a £345 product fee and £500 cashback on completion.

Hammersmith property values race ahead

Those of you watching this Saturday's BNY Mellon Boat Race and wishing you lived in one of those beautiful properties overlooking the river may be interested to know exactly how much they cost.

Brokers benefit most from MMR

Brokers, building societies and specialist lenders have benefited most under MMR according to IMLA’s report The new ‘normal’ one year on: is the march back to a sustainable market on track?

IMLA: property inertia spells danger

A structural decline in the rate of house sales means the average turnover of a property has almost trebled eight to 23 years since the 1980s, according to a new report by the Intermediary Mortgage Lenders Association.