Bananas Inc launches commercial division

Ramesh Sharma

January 21, 2006

The packager, which up until now has specialised in residential mortgages, is hoping to establish intermediaries in an area traditionally dominated by the larger lenders.

Sue Cox, business manager at Bananas Inc, said: “In residential lending more than 70 per cent of mortgages go through intermediaries but in the commercial market the number is nearer 15 per cent. Brokers are waking up to the opportunities presented by this sector, which has been poorly served by the main clearing banks, and we intend to help them do this.”

She added: “There is a place for any intermediary in the commercial mortgage market. Even small brokers have significant numbers of business contacts and can earn a very good living from this area of business by forwarding leads to us. Similarly, larger intermediaries can build up a very good business but need to offer the customer a very convenient, efficient service with a fast turnaround, which is where we can help them.”

John Stewart, director at PMI Independent Financial Advisers, also thinks commercial mortgages could be important for intermediaries but believes they have to have the opportunities.

“It is another possible revenue stream for brokers so it is always something worth exploring but as it is very specialised we often end up relaying a client onto a specialist commercial broker.

“It is important for us to ensure our clients get the best possible service so the structures need to be in place so we can help. It is something we would get into more if given the opportunity as it can be a lucrative revenue stream. So if we get the enquiries, we will not turn them down.”

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