Brokers must not be caught “asleep at the wheel”

Sam Cordon

October 8, 2013

Gilmour made the comment following this morning’s launch of the second phase of the Help to Buy Scheme which guarantees 15% of a buyer or remortgagers mortgage on properties worth up to £600,000.

Research from Zoopla found that more than 600,000 homes on the market are eligible for inclusion in the £12bn scheme and a recent report from Santander claimed that up 1.7 million people are planning to use it.

Gilmour said: “In the short term the Help to Buy Scheme is going to provide a welcome boost to many brokers.

“However we must all remember that the launch of the scheme was a political move. One way or another Help to Buy will end by the next election in 2015.

“Should the Conservative’s gain re-election the scheme will have served its purpose and will no longer be required.

“Based on how vocal the Labour Party has been about the scheme it is also clear that they would not look to continue with it should they be elected.

“Brokers need to be careful that they don’t come to rely on business provided from Help to Buy as their main income stream.”

Even without the Help to Buy Scheme 2013 has seen a marked change in the type of business that brokers are writing.

A recent study from Aviva reported that there has been a substantial drop in protection sales following an uptick in mortgage sales.

This decline in protection sales has led a number of leading figures in the protection industry to warn brokers not to neglect protection in favour of mortgage sales.

Gilmour said: “Help to Buy will be pulled eventually. If I was a broker I would be asking what I was going to do once that happened.

“Many brokers have cases that they have invested significant time in but can’t place. It’s essential that this time isn’t wasted and by putting in a little more time they may be able to place it elsewhere.

“Brokers must make sure they tap into all the products and resources available to them to ensure that they are able to build sustainable income streams which will sustain them in the future.

“We hope the resurgence the mortgage market is seeing will be with us for a long time to come. However we caution brokers not to just think about their bank balances today but think about them tomorrow.”

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