OneFamily now approves nine out of 10 applications for lifetime mortgages which it claims is because each application is reviewed individually by a qualified underwriter.
Nici Audhlam-Gardiner, managing director of lifetime mortgages at OneFamily, puts this down to its underwriting team “willing to go the extra mile” to work with advisers to find solutions.
She said: “We know the equity release market continues to change and is attracting a much broader range of over 55s than ever before.
“We want to work together with advisers to ensure they can help their clients with their individual needs.
“The team is just a phone call away and are happy to discuss all scenarios and suggest the best possible solution, for the specific query.”
OneFamily recently had a case where the valuation report on a property came in below its minimum property value of £70,000, due to timber and damp issues.
Audhlam-Gardiner added: “Investigation work showed that to bring the value of the property up it would only take minor work, so rather than reject the case we allowed for the work to be done.
“Once completed the property met our lending criteria and we proceeded with the mortgage.
“We will also consider properties in locations that other providers won’t, and properties that may have different building materials used in construction that wouldn’t usually qualify.
“By offering a bespoke, personal service we hope to give the advisers the support they need to help in some way address the ‘one approach fits all’ equity release products available elsewhere.”
Jon Tweed, sales director of lifetime mortgages at OneFamily added how efficient it is, advisers have access to OneFamilys’ underwriters.
He said: “For us it’s very important as well as offering innovative products, offering the service that goes with that.
“Very often underwriters are hidden away and advisers have no access to them so for us it’s important they are available to the adviser partners to discuss cases upfront and hence we rarely see surprises going with applications.
“We also bring underwriters to roadshows and advisers like that. If they come across a quirky case, they can ask the underwriters who are the experts.
“We are doing more of this. We have another roadshow in May in Leeds at the mortgage business expo.”