The qualification covers the commercial and regulatory environment, products, services and legislation that inform the mortgage advice process. To gain the diploma, advisers will need to complete a new level 4 Advanced Mortgage Advice unit.
Brokers are required by Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) regulations to complete the level 3 CeMAP in order to carry out compliant business. The new module is not mandatory but intends to help brokers gain an understanding of the importance of consumer-oriented advice, sound communication and appropriate ethical behaviours.
Martin Day, managing director, corporate and professional qualifications at The London Institute of Banking & Finance, said: “The UK mortgage market is dynamic and complex and it’s clear that in order to offer the very best service to their clients, advisers have to ensure their skills are highly relevant and up-to-date. CeMAP has achieved recognition as the leading regulated qualification in this market and, building on this success, many mortgage advisers will want to continue their professional development, beyond what is required by the FCA in order to practice.
“The new CeMAP Diploma will allow these advisers to develop their skills and demonstrate to clients their proficiency and understanding of the latest trends and developments, allowing them to enhance the service they provide.”
The Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) offers its own optional qualification, Level 4 Certificate in Advanced Mortgage Advice, which gives advisers the opportunity to develop their advice skills further. It also aims to help advisers diversify into areas such as bridging finance, auctions, financing foreign properties and other specialist types of mortgage lending.
According to figures published today by the Society of Mortgage Professionals (SMP), 500 mortgage advisers have completed the certificate since its launch two years ago.
SMP head of professional development, Lee Travis, said the news was “testament to the growing desire within the mortgage market for a higher level of professional qualification”.