Nine out of 10 brokers expect to increase the amount of bridging finance they do over the next 12 months, a broker survey by specialist bridging lender Hope Capital.
Some 97% of brokers said that they are more than happy to work with unregulated lenders and more than half said bridging already makes up at least 20% of their business, with one in 16 saying more than 80% of their business is bridging.
Jonathan Sealey, chief executive of Hope Capital, said: “Like any area of lending, there are areas that brokers would like to see improved, and we are keen to address these by always offering the fastest turnaround times and ensuring we are always transparent and flexible.
“The call for lower rates is likely to be a never ending one however. Rates, including our own, have dropped substantially in the past few months and bridging loans are up to 3% cheaper than they were a few years ago, but while it’s natural that brokers always want them to be lower still, bridging rates will never be the same as mainstream as every loan is underwritten manually.”
The part of the process that causes the most delays in the completion of a bridging loan is the speed of the client’s solicitor – almost a third cite this as an issue.
This was followed by collating information from the client, which is seen as the main cause of delays for 36% of brokers.
Getting approval from lenders is an issue for one in five with 20% saying they have a lack of understanding or knowledge of the bridging process.
In terms of issues that brokers want to see addressed, 52% thought flexibility on LTVs should be a priority, while almost half (48%) said they would like lenders to consider lowering interest rates and improve the speed of service. Four in 10 said acceptance criteria needs to be addressed.
Sealey added that overall the survey painted a very encouraging picture for the bridging industry and for Hope Capital as a lender with 99% saying either that they will, or are likely to, recommend Hope Capital.