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Legal & General: Furlough-friendly searches continue to fall

Jake Carter

August 16, 2021

laptop mortgage searches

Searches for furlough-friendly mortgage criteria fell by 18% between June and July, according to data from Legal & General Mortgage Club’s SmartrCriteria tool.

However, the latest findings also indicated that many borrowers continue to need mortgage options suitable for those will irregular incomes and repayment blemishes.

Demand for lenders willing to consider borrowers with satisfied repayment defaults remained in the top three most sought-after criteria points, with searches for unsecured arrears and unsatisfied defaults also appearing in the top 15.

Demand for criteria relating to satisfied County Court Judgments (CCJs) also remained consistent month-on-month, while searches for borrowers with bankruptcy jumped by 24%.

This was alongside a 10% jump in criteria for borrowers with ongoing payday loan agreements.

Criteria for borrowers employed via a fixed-term contract increased by 17% in July, and general contract worker criteria requests also rose by 14%. Foreign income searches also jumped by 20%.

Legal & General Mortgage Club’s SmartrCriteria tool also recorded a 41% increase in demand for Help to Buy criteria, and searches for shared ownership products also appeared in the top 20 most searched terms.

Visa-friendly mortgage criteria remained the most requested term by advisers in July. This was in conjunction with a 20% increase in requests for borrowers with foreign income.

Following an increase in demand for capital raising mortgages in May, July also saw searches for these products increase by 9%, the fourth most searched for criteria.

Clare Beardmore, head of mortgage transformation and operations at Legal & General Mortgage Club, said: “Despite the easing in restrictions enabling many of us to enjoy a return to more day-to-day activities, for others, the negative financial impacts of the pandemic continue to rage on.

“Our latest data shows that there is still a significant portion of those seeking a mortgage who have financial complications, such as missed payments, or credit impairments.

“Amidst this backdrop of complex borrower needs, the role of advisers in helping clients to access competitive lending options has become ever important and for homeowners across the UK, the need for guidance and support when it comes time to find a new mortgage is clear.

“However, to tackle these more complex cases efficiently, advisers also need to embrace technology, which can help streamline search results and automate process such as affordability calculations.

“With the purchase market expected to normalise over the coming weeks and in the wake of the end of the stamp duty holiday, now is the time to explore the tech options and how they can benefit their business.”


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