Standing of new PMPA lender questioned

Ramesh Sharma

June 1, 2004

Mortgage Packagers Alliance (PMPA) will launch its lender Unity Homeloans Limited on 31 October amid accusations that it is simply launching a white label of Infinity Mortgages’ product range.

Mortgage Introducer has been informed that the new Unity product range is an almost direct copy of Infinity’s which, like Unity, is funded by specialist banking group Investec.

Unity’s online system, Uninet, is also modelled on Infinity’s system Infinet while on Companies House, Unity Homeloans’ previous name is listed as Infinity Mortgages No.2 Limited. This has brought up doubts in the market over Unity’s standing as a lender.

But Vic Jannels, spokesman for PMPA, confirmed Unity is a standalone lender and although it has synergies and links with Infinity, it’ll be in competition with it.

He said: “For our back-end administration Infinity already had the perfect system so we created a second version of this bespoke solution. The product ranges are similar but all non-conforming products are not that dissimilar.”

Jannels added: “To set-up a company, it is normal to buy a shell, in this instance Infinity Mortgages 2, and then change it. This also makes it quicker to get FSA authorisation.”

Ravi Takhar, head of mortgage principle services at Investec, said: “Unity and Infinity have separate products. Infinity Mortgages 2 was a vehicle for PMPA to create a lender but this is not an Infinity vehicle anymore and it has no shares in Unity. We have the best of both worlds with these two providers.”

Unity Homeloans’ products are available exclusively through the packager members of the PMPA and include 90 per cent LTV on employed and self-employed options and rates from 5.95 per cent for two-year fixes with no overhanging redemptions.

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