On the one hand, we have had Castle Trust endure a long approval process via the FSA and OFT to bring to market a fully advised and qualified second charge loan proposition.
By all accounts it has not been an easy road. Whilst it is the OFT that regulates the loan proposition it is the FSA who will have approved the overall business proposition.
On the other hand Tesco have also been approved to launch a non-advised mortgage proposition that means you can grab a mortgage with about as much help as you get when picking value, own brand or finest beans.
Where the offering is complex, with higher and lower fee options combined with different interest rates, these are products which need the provider to take responsibility and provide advise or get brokers involved.
With the FSA wrestling with the Mortgage Market Review and how to bring the Consumer Credit Act (CCA) into their control, these decisions appear to lack a degree of consistency and are at odds with what many feel the future should look like.
If we are to believe the latest MMR consultation, then non-advised should be consigned to the bin. However a new lender, in this new more interventionist supervisory world is allowed to launch such a proposition.
It might be within the rules but surely it is not within the principles of the regulators current guidance and thinking.
Those who know me are aware that I am sometimes concerned by the emotions expressed by some of the brokers who contribute to the “blogosphere” but in this case they have a good point.
Our schizophrenic FSA does appear to have lost the plot. Surely in a world that is tied, non-advised should be a thing of the previous era.
Robert Sinclair is chief executive of AMI