Mortgage intermediaries are split over whether the ‘introducers’ of mortgage business should be left outside the scope of regulation, following the publication of CP146.
CP146 said that where a firm introduces a borrower to an authorised firm, with a view to the provision of independent advice, they are excluded from the regulatory regime, subject to certain stipulations.
A new poll found 47% of brokers agreed that ‘introducers’ need not be regulated, 45% disagreed and 8% were uncertain.
The findings are a result of a regular survey conducted by Future Mortgages, the Future 500 survey. Richard Hurst, communications manager at Future Mortgages, said: ‘We would agree with the FSA. The point of regulation is protection for the client. We think that when someone is merely passing on a customer to someone who is qualified, and regulated, then the duty of care is certainly being exercised in that situation and we do not see any point doubling up on that.’
When asked if the FSA’s consulting on moving away from the requirement of full disclosure of fees could be detrimental to consumers, 55% of brokers said no. Just over one third thought it could be detrimental to consumers and 11% were unsure. Hurst commented: ‘I think the general mood is right in this case. The main responsibility of the intermediary is to get the best product for the customer. If you are going to start factoring in the products’ procuration fees then, all things being equal, should you then be recommending the product that gives the lowest rate to pay or the product that pays the lowest rate to the adviser? Fees do not impact upon the customer.’
The survey also found that 95% of Future Mortgages’ brokers hold, or are scheduled to sit the formal mortgage qualifications required by year end. 76% have seen their business grow over the last three months and 63% expect it to grow over the next three months.