ING Direct to launch its first mortgage deal
It is widely expected that ING, which specialises in direct savings, will make its mortgage product available direct to customers only, although some commentators believe it may change its distribution strategy further down the line if it struggles to appeal to clients.
Shelley Morrell, spokeswoman for ING Direct, said: “Several products are being considered but the front-runner is now a mortgage and ING Direct would like to launch one sometime in 2006. Before doing so, it is going to consult with its customers as it wants to offer them a product that shares the open, honest and simple approach ING has brought to the savings market.”
“Over the next few weeks a customer questionnaire is going out asking about the product features that would really be valued. Once this feedback has been taken on-board the product can be finalised and launch plans made,” Morrell added.
Ray Boulger, senior technical manager at John Charcol, commented: “I would expect it will launch a basic product, keenly priced, but will probably be direct only. Whether it stays as direct only remains to be seen. Like The one account, it may realise the need to expand its distribution over time.”
John Mawdsley, director of The Mortgage Partnership, said: “When Direct Line started selling mortgages it failed miserably due to only being available direct to the customer.
“If ING Direct is doing a similar thing it will have an uphill struggle if it doesn’t include brokers. People want advice before getting a mortgage so ING has to convince brokers that it is a good company with good products.”