OakNorth launches into mortgages

Michael Lloyd

May 7, 2019

OakNorth, a bank that provides debt finance to entrepreneurs, has launched into the retail mortgage market with lifetime tracker rate products, targeting high net worth (HNW) individuals.

It aims to provide quick bespoke lending solutions to borrowers that find it difficult to pass the criteria of high street banks. It has a minimum loan of £500,000 but in exceptional cases loans can be considered above £250,000.

OakNorth can lend up to 75% loan-to-value, rising to 85% LTV in exceptional cases. Rates start from 3.99% above the base rate.

Ben Barbanel, head of debt finance at OakNorth, said: “High street banks have limited mortgage offerings when it comes to borrowers who don’t have a regular or established source of income, such as the self-employed or business owners.

“Private banks, on the other hand, tend to have high entry requirements that are unfavourable to most of these individuals.

“Lenders are typically unwilling to offer bespoke terms to their mortgage products and as a result, more than one in ten business owners in the UK are unable to access the finance they need to purchase their first home.

“By leveraging our experience in creating tailored loans for businesses, we can plug this gap and provide our growing portfolio of property investors and developers with mortgage solutions that are attractive, quick, convenient and easy to use.”

The challenger has hired three highly experienced mortgage advisers – Kevin Appleton, Matthew McDonald and Mark Howell. Appleton joins from the Financial Ombudsman Service where he helped resolve disputes between financial businesses and their customers.

Prior to this, he was a mortgage broker and also spent 18 years with the RBS Group, RBS Bank, Coutts and Co and the NatWest Private Client Group, undertaking complex credit reviews and applications for new and existing borrowers and managed and built a portfolio of ultra-HNW private clients.

He also has an extensive track record working with entrepreneurs having built a private portfolio of more c.600 entrepreneurs whilst working as a private banker at NatWest’s Mayfair commercial office.

McDonald was previously a broker, responsible for generating and transacting business throughout his existing network and by building new relationships with introducers and clients.

He also spent 12 years at Coutts & Co which saw him responsible for managing and building a portfolio of over 200 HNW clients with combined assets and liabilities in excess of £250m.

Howell joins from the Bank of Ireland where he held the position of director of marketing and customer management, UK mortgages.

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