Brokers dismiss Mortgagebundles.com

Ramesh Sharma

February 4, 2006

Mortgagebundles.com allows lenders to bid for loan business after the site bundles together borrowers with similar profiles by asking ‘nine simple questions’ with the aim of giving them bulk appeal to lenders. The site reports it represents over 30 per cent of the UK market (by gross mortgage lending) but intermediaries are far from threatened.

James Cotton, mortgage specialist at London & Country, explained the site contained a distinct lack of advice and suggested the bundles would have to be of substantial numbers in order for the lender to consider coming up with a bespoke product.

He said: “From a consumer’s point of view there is minimal advice being provided and with the limited number of lenders signed-up it has an insufficient market share. The site promises much but people still want and need professional advice to guide them through the mortgage maze. Lenders know what intermediaries can bring them and that’s why there is so much competition in the market.”

Dev Malle, director of sales at Pink Home Loans, said: “This may prove to be useful for some consumers but won’t replace the importance of financial advisers.”

Thomas Reeh, chief executive of blackandwhite.co.uk, said: “Nothing will beat the service of a two-hour face-to-face factfind detailing the complete financial picture of a customer. Only then can you even hope to develop some realistic and meaningful solutions for the consumer.”

Nationwide Building Society has signed up to Mortgagebundles.com for an initial three-month pilot scheme. Larry Banda, head of mortgages at Nationwide, explained: “Nationwide is always looking at alternative ways of attracting new members and is an advocate of online technology.”

Glenn Morrell, spokesman for Mortgagebundles.com, commented: “Mortgagebundles.com doesn’t give advice; the key element is that the borrower decides. Brokers can use the service on behalf of their clients and charge a fee.”

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