The Co-operative Bank has confirmed that it is to re-enter the mortgage market next month following a 10-year absence.
David Smith, spokesman for the Co-op, said: “We pulled out of the market because we decided that the money coming in could be better used elsewhere.
“Now, however, we have a total of around 2.6 million customers who are all getting their mortgages from somewhere, so we decided the time was right to return to mortgage lending.”
The Co-op is hoping for the same success with mortgages that it has achieved with Smile, its internet-only bank that has attracted over 200,000 customers since its launch last October. However, there are no plans to make the mortgage products available through Smile until sometime next year.
The re-launch of mortgage services will be initially targeted at existing customers but will be open to everyone. The bank is also considering targeting intermediaries for business next year. The new products accompanying the launch will be ‘green’ mortgages, in keeping with the Co-op’s traditional ethical policies, and each new mortgage will include an energy survey with advice on how to conserve energy in the home.