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Lenders criticised for not accepting online bank statements

Ramesh Sharma

June 1, 2004

Despite the increased use of technology and enhanced online capabilities within the industry, a number of lenders have been criticised for failing to allow borrowers to submit online bank statements as part of their mortgage application.

Sarah Gwilt, mortgage adviser at Dickson Lishman Prince, could not understand why lenders were unable to process information from online bank statements. She said: “Several of my clients have internet-administered bank accounts and therefore do not receive monthly printed statements.

“The lenders will not accept internet-printed statements so clients have to pay for the cost of having their bank statements printed. Surely lenders need to review this situation as we are coming up against this more and more.”

James Carter, IFA at Virtue Financial, agreed it was a very real concern. “Banks themselves are now encouraging clients to use online banking and not have statements sent in the post. However, when it comes to obtaining a mortgage they require original type statements which have to be ordered which can cause delays,” he said.

So far only a few lenders accept statements obtained online, including BM Solutions and Skipton Building Society. James Cotton, mortgage specialist at London & Country, argued that lenders may ask for original-type statements to verify the client’s identity and combat fraud.

“It could be lenders feel statements sent through the post, bearing the bank’s logo and so on, are more official. It might also be that online statements are easier to forge but if more and more people are switching to online banking then lenders will have to make changes to their systems.”

Carla Lavender, press officer at BM Solutions, added: “We recognise more people are banking online and so it is part of our service to accept online statements. Bank statements are not used in isolation to get information.”


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