Howard, a popular and widely recognised figure in the mortgage industry, was drafted into the company by Matthew Wyles, a senior adviser to the Castle Trust board, in May 2013 to assist in reviewing its mortgage strategy.
His retirement comes after spending more than 30 years in the mortgage market and the majority of it in senior positions. He spent 13 years as intermediary sales director at Bank of Ireland Mortgages between July 1985 and 1998 before going on to spend two years as sales and marketing director at Mortgages PLC, moving on to become head of corporate accounts at Nationwide in January 2002 where he stayed for just over 10 years.
Howard said: “Matthew knew that I could only commit to a finite period with Castle Trust and that I always intended to take up the lifestyle opportunities afforded by retirement.
“My current contract expires in May of this year and I feel that is the right moment to pass on the baton to someone who can commit for the longer term.”
Wyles added: “Paul has made an immeasurably important contribution to the dramatic acceleration in Castle Trust’s growth and has helped me lay sound foundations upon which we are now building a strong franchise in the market.
“The potential for equity loans in the UK mortgage market is vast – we are only just scratching the surface.”
Castle Trust distributes its mortgages exclusively through an elite panel of intermediary partners.
Wyles, who will lead the search for the new mortgage chief, said “A deep knowledge of the intermediary market is important. In addition, our key criteria for the role are leadership, credibility, intellect and energy. We have a great story and this is rare opportunity for a talented executive to join Castle Trust as we hit a new, exciting inflexion point in our development plans.”
Wyles emphasised that Castle Trust is “playing across a very broad waterfront” which includes substantial buy-to-let portfolios and £30m loans on big London houses as well as the bread and butter business from up and down the country.
“The London market is very important to us”, he added.
Castle Trust offers buy-to-let equity loans for landlords and partnership mortgages for homeowners
Buy-to-let equity loans allow landlords to borrow up to 20% of the value of a buy-to-let property. To help with cashflow, there are no monthly repayment obligations. Instead, the loan is paid at redemption plus a minority share of the increase in the property’s value during the life of the loan.
Partnership mortgages allow homeowners to withdraw equity up to 20% of the value of their homes to generate funds for a range of needs.