Martin Stewart (pictured), director of London Money, and James McGregor, director of Mesa Financial have worked together to help a US client secure the purchase of a home despite the difficult lending environment caused by COVID-19.
When the client approached London Money in early January, a solution had been agreed in principle with a high street lender.
However, initially the client could not find a suitable property for their £2.5m budget.
The client was eventually able to find the right home, but this came at the same time as the COVID-19 crisis began to have an impact in late March, the lending environment deteriorated and criteria tightened rapidly.
This issue was exacerbated by the presence of various other complications in the case.
Stewart said: “Typically, the client then found their dream property for £2.4m just as the lenders appetite dried up.
“There we are a number of complexities with the case – 85% [loan-to-value (LTV)], a foreign national and someone whose income was primarily bonus-related and derived from within the oil sector.
“It was somewhat of a perfect storm. When these problems were compounded further when the vendor demanded a three week deadline to exchange, it was clear to me that working with a firm more in tune with this type of lending was going to be of paramount importance.
“James and I have passed cases to each other on various occasions as we recognise the importance of collaboration being more important that competition when it comes to securing the right outcome for clients, so I had to hesitation in suggesting we work together again.”
McGregor added: “This was a great case to work on because it showed the value of brokers being able to collaborate together where different skill sets can be utilised throughout the transaction in order to engage the client and to work a complex deal through to completion.
“The client had additional global assets which squeezed affordability.
“Furthermore, as with many [high net worth] borrowers, their preference was for the majority of lending to be done on interest only.
“From offer to exchange, including a renegotiation following a reduced valuation, we were able to help secure the property in 13 working days.
“Suffice to say we had a very happy client on the phone on Friday and we look forward to working with London Money on similar cases going forward.”