Exclusive: NatWest trials large mortgages via brokers
The lender has approached brokers to discuss its service and is accepting mortgage applications on a case-by-case informal basis.
A spokesman for NatWest Intermediary Solutions said: “Large loans is an area we know a number of brokers specialise in and so we’ve been speaking with them to learn more about serving customers with more complex mortgage requirements.
“Once we’ve reviewed our current offering in this sector we’ll be in a position to say more on how we might respond to those more tailored needs.”
The lender said it is always looking to enhance its service to brokers and speaking to them directly to understand what works for them was the best approach.
Simon Gammon, head of Knight Frank Finance, said NatWest is an important partner to add to its panel of lenders.
He said: “NatWest increasing its appetite in the large mortgage market is very good news. It is strong in the high loan-to-value end of the market, it has strong processes and experienced underwriters.”
Mike Perrin, head of sales at Large Mortgage Loans, said he is delighted to hear that NatWest is joining the large loan arena but the proposition would need some enhancements if it was to stand a chance of succeeding.
He said: “Whilst NatWest has a very competitive product range it will need to match this with access to specialist underwriters and review its interest-only offering via intermediaries if it is to succeed.
“Mainstream lenders are currently able to offer lower borrowing terms than private banks, however the lack of boxes to tick enables private banks to come into their own for complex and unusual cases.”
There has been a growing trend over the past nine months of high street lenders re-entering the large mortgage market but Gammon said not all lenders were coming to market with a smooth proposition.
He said: “Some lenders have experienced teething problems with their computers whereby their software does not allow a broker to enter more than five noughts which is surprising giving they are gearing up for loans over £1m.”
But he added NatWest has always had good IT systems in place and its processes had so far not caused him a problem.