Bridging lenders respond to CML

Robyn Hall

September 7, 2012

Earlier this week the CML published its thoughts on the bridging market, specifically referencing CML chairman Martijn Van der Heijden’s speech earlier this year when he questioned whether the bridging and short-term lending market was “at the moment universally fit for purpose.”

Christian Faes, Montello, was surprised that CML felt the need to comment on the bridging market.

“In their statement, CML have shown how little they understand about the bridging finance market by stating the ‘purpose of the loan’ determines whether it is regulated or not – this has nothing to do with it.

“Dealing with regulation of the bridging market is really the Association of Short Term Lenders domain.”

Duncan Kreeger, chairman of West One Loans, said: “Professional standards are improving and we’re seeing much less of the bickering that has blighted the industry’s reputation in the past.”

Kreeger added: “The appointment of Benson Hersch as CEO of the ASTL is particularly encouraging.

“He is set to introduce a code of conduct, which will build on the progress made in professional standards over the last year or so.”

And Rob Jupp, CEO of distributor Brightstar said: “The mainstream bridging market is as scrupulous as the mainstream mortgage market and we shouldn’t demonise what is largely a well run and ethical business.

“The comments may be relevant to very small bridging firms but certainly not the type of lenders we do business with.”

Bob Sturges, head of communications at Omni Capital, led the pack in being supportive over CML’s call for increased regulation in the industry.

He said: “As a bridging insider we share many of the concerns raised by CML. None of them are unsolvable but do require a considered, mature response from the industry.

“As a senior and well-regarded trade association the CML can help play its part and I would be surprised if it hasn’t already extended a helping hand to its younger bridging counterparts.”

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