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Mortgage roundup – industry firsts and product enhancements

This week’s roundup takes a look at the latest in the mortgage market, from L&G’s latest addition to its lender panel and an industry-first remortgage product from Stipendium, to Vida’s enhanced residential range and Furness’ latest product releases. Meanwhile, Kent Reliance promises extra flexibility for brokers and their clients, and The Nottingham launches limited company BTL criteria enhancements.

L&G Mortgage Club welcomes Lendco to lender panel

Legal & General Mortgage Club has welcomed Lendco, an intermediary only specialist mortgage lender that provides real estate investors with non-regulated property finance solutions, to its lender panel.


The move will give the Club’s network of advisers access to a wider range of specialist mortgage products suitable for experienced property investors.

Lendco launched in 2018 with the mission to offer tailored, specialist buy-to-let solutions to professional property investors, no matter how complex their borrowing requirements. The specialist lender has since completed nearly £1 billion in total loan originations.

Its maximum loan size for 75% LTV products is £2 million, and the maximum loan size per asset is £4 million, and £10 million per borrower. Lendco’s HMO mortgages allow up to eight times letting rooms and consider multi-unit leaseholds as well as LA or HA tenancies. If a landlord’s rental income doesn’t meet Lendco’s affordability requirements, surplus earned income can also be used to cover any rental shortfall.

Lendco offers portfolio mortgages, allowing landlords to benefit from the flexibility that comes with having one lender for all transactions. The lender also accepts applications from ex-patriots and foreign nationals, including registered borrowers in the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man and Gibraltar.

Danny Belton, head of lender relationships at L&G Mortgage Club, says: “With landlords buying more homes than they are selling for the first time since 2016, it is imperative that the market offers landlords competitive and flexible solutions, whatever their situation.”

“This range allows brokers to support landlords with complex borrowing requirements, at a time where finances may seem stretched and house prices are surging.”

He continues: “I have every confidence that this will be a welcomed addition by our adviser community, who can now help their customers benefit from manually underwritten transactions by Lendco’s experienced credit team.”

Lendco’s managing director, Simon Knight, adds: “Joining Legal & General Mortgage Club is the next logical step in our growth plans. It allows Lendco to upscale its operations by adding a household name to our distribution network, without impacting relationships with our select panel of brokers or compromising on the service we offer them.”

Remortgage product launches with industry-first no broker fee

Financial services platform Stipendium has launched an ‘industry-first remortgage product that will allow homeowners to remortgage unlimited times with no broker fees, for a one-off cost of just £99.

The typical homeowner remortgages four times during their 25-year mortgage term at an average total cost over that period of £9,960. The broker fee will often be a large chunk of this at an average of £300 per transaction and therefore a lifetime cost of £1,200.

With 501,501 remortgages carried out in the UK over the last 12 months, this alone is a saving of an estimated  £150 million per annum if every borrower were to take advantage of the Stipendium Remerge product. Multiplied over a 25-year term, that potential saving balloons to over £3.7 billion.

The Remerge product will allow homeowners to:

  • Remortgage forever for a one off £99 – unlimited, with no broker fees, ever

  • Have their mortgages arranged via advisers with access to 12,000 mortgage products across 90 lenders

  • Access their own personal remortgage expert

  • Access an inbuilt financial health and wealth check

Christina Melling, chief executive officer of Stipendium, says: “Broker fees are a large proportion of a homeowners mortgage and remortgage costs as another layer in the huge overall cost of securing property funding.”

“And on an ongoing basis, given the typical propensity to remortgage multiple times in our lifetime, we perhaps forget how much this element really costs us and Stipendium has set out to solve this for the consumer.”

She adds: “When you consider that over 500,000 UK homeowners remortgaged in the last year with a typical broker fee of £300 each time, it’s a £3.7bn problem well worth solving.”

Vida Homeloans enhances its residential range

Mortgage lending specialist Vida Homeloans has announced changes to its residential range.

These changes include removing the £180 assessment fee from all residential products, as well as offering a free valuation for properties up to £1 million and providing a £500 contribution to legal fees on completion across its Fee Saver Range.

The lender recognises that the need for specialist lending doesn’t finish at lower loan sizes, and borrowers who are purchasing more expensive homes, or requiring larger loans, can also have specialist needs which are underserved by the high street.

Vida has also made a number of criteria enhancements in response to market changes and feedback from intermediary partners and their clients.

The changes include increasing the loan-to-value (LTV) to 85% where debt consolidation is a factor, in addition to significantly increasing maximum loan sizes across the portfolio. Vida has also changed its criteria where the client has experienced a repossession from 10 years to 6 years

Richard Tugwell, director of mortgage distribution at Vida, comments: “Vida is a forward-looking and agile business with an ear to the market, and our aim is to ensure we consistently deliver a first-class intermediary experience and provide a great range of product options for broker’s clients.”

“These changes demonstrate our commitment to the specialist residential sector. With the rising cost of living and increasing interest rates, specialist lending is going to become increasingly important.”

He adds: “The product and criteria changes take account of the fast-moving pace of the mortgage sector, and we are confident that these will provide great solutions to borrowers who are cut out of traditional mainstream lending.”

Furness launches new range of resi, buy-to-let and holiday-let products

Furness for Intermediaries has launched a range of new products, available across England, Scotland and Wales.

The new residential products start with a 1.29% two-year discount (£999 fee) for cases up to 80% LTV.

For clients looking for a 95% LTV mortgage, there is a two-year discount option with a pay rate of 2.49%, two-year fixed rate at 3.29% and a five-year fixed rate at 3.49% – all of which are fee-free.

As well as being available for employed clients, Furness will also look at cases with a more complex income including for those who are self-employed. Its flexible approach to lending means it is able to assess each case on its own merits including looking at pre-tax profits when assessing affordability.

For landlords, Furness is able to offer a wide range of Unregulated, Regulated, Consumer and Holiday let options up to 80% LTV. The lowest rate buy-to-let product is a two-year discount with a pay rate of 1.59% (£995 Fee) for cases up to 65% LTV.

As with all buy-to-let products from Furness, applications will be assessed based on an applicant’s overall financial situation – not by simply using an ICR calculation. Earned income, together with mortgage and other credit commitments, will be reviewed personally by an underwriter. This enables Furness to consider a wider range of cases that present good quality, low-risk lending.

All products in this new range include £250 cashback and a free standard valuation package for both purchases and remortgages.

Alasdair McDonald, head of intermediaries at Furness, comments: “We’re delighted to launch this new range of products to brokers across England, Scotland and Wales.”

“With a range of products with low pay rates and our flexible approach to lending, we are confident we can help you find the solution to your next case whether it be for a residential, buy-to-let or even holiday let property.”

Kent Reliance promises extra flexibility for brokers

Kent Reliance for Intermediaries has launched a new residential mortgage range to support brokers with clients who need flexibility around complex income streams.

The specialist lender, part of the specialist lender OSB Group, will aim to support those who also could deploy the use of higher income multiples.

This may include professionals with sustainable incomes that will increase due to attaining professional qualifications, clients who provide evidence of regular bonuses and/or those with more than one form of income.

Key features of the new range include:

  • Up to 95% LTV (excluding added fees)

  • Rates from 4.29%

  • Two and five-year fixed rates available

  • Max loan size £1.5 million

Adrian Moloney, group intermediary director of OSB Group, comments: “Now more than ever, the value of a specialist mortgage broker cannot be overlooked, especially for clients who may already be paying high monthly rents, but are unable to access homeownership through the high street as they need a multi-income stream to be considered.”

“At Kent Reliance for Intermediaries, our underwriters are widely acknowledged as having best-in-class service as well as outstanding knowledge. Our expertise means we could provide a common-sense solution even if the case falls outside of standard criteria, with the ability to support a wide range of client types and differing income considerations.”

He concludes: “This new flexible residential range is another example of us working with our broker partners and using our in-house expertise to handcraft positive lending solutions for clients.”

The Nottingham launches limited company BTL criteria enhancements

The Nottingham has unveiled a series of buy-to-let and limited company BTL criteria enhancements.

The building society has responded to broker feedback by making changes including lower Interest Cover Ratio (ICR) figures for BTL and reduced calculation rates for standard BTL and limited company applications, together with the removal of a required minimum income.

Here are the lender’s criteria changes in full:

  • Limited company ICR five-year calculation rate 3.35% (from 5.50%)

  • No minimum income required (was £25k p/a single applicant, £40k joint)

  • No requirement to see last month’s personal and business bank statements as standard

  • Standard BTL Interest Cover Ratio (ICR) now 145% (from 165%)

  • Standard BTL ICR five-year calculation rate now at 3.45% (was 3.95%)

  • Maximum LTV for lending on flats raised to 75% (was 65%)

  • Removal of all Covid-related criteria

The Nottingham’s head of mortgage product, Christie Cook, says: “We’re delighted to bring such positive criteria changes to life, and believe they will make placing buy-to-let and limited company buy-to-let cases with us more accessible and cohesive for brokers than ever before.”

“In turn, it’s a major positive for their customers and is the latest step in us highlighting our ongoing commitment to providing competitive and fit-for-purpose products, services and processes in the BTL space.”

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