Non-compliant advertising ‘on the increase’

Ramesh Sharma

June 1, 2004

Studies conducted by Mortgages plc revealed potentially non-compliant advertising within mortgage adverts increased by 7 per cent to 31 per cent between April and September.

Results gathered from April showed 24 per cent of all mortgage advertisements were potentially non-compliant; the most likely mistakes being the use of outdated Consumer Credit Act (CCA) risk warnings and leaving out an APR when one was required.

However figures from September have revealed that, although CCA and APR issues highlighted within the April study had been remedied, the new rules regarding equal prominence to prescribed and promotional wording are now not being adhered to.

Julian Wells, head of marketing at Mortgages plc, was pleased problems highlighted in April had been rectified. He said: “As an industry it is heartening to see we have made progress with the compliance of our promotional advertising over the past six months.”

Mark Chilton, chief executive of Purely Mortgages, said: “These figures certainly reflect what we have seen but we are now rooting down into the core non-compliant advertising.

A major worry concerns multiplicity and websites. Lenders and intermediaries have got their act together but the degree of non-compliant advertising on the internet is appalling. More and more people are venturing into lead generation and as the internet is fast being realised as the most cost-effective lead generator, this has led to a lot of new players rushing into it.

“It is pretty evident that many of these adverts are non-compliant and haven’t been checked off properly.”

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