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Former FCA MMR specialist joins equity release firm

  • 09/09/2015
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Former FCA MMR specialist joins equity release firm
Retirement Advantage, the equity release provider formed by the merger of MGM Advantage and Stonehaven, has appointed a former senior member of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) as its head of compliance.

David Forsdyke was a senior associate and equity release specialist at the FCA where he was part of the team responsible for implementing the Mortgage Market Review (MMR).

During his time working for the regulator he worked on the development of policy and leading the transference of MMR rules across to the equity release industry.

Tom Evans, managing director of Retirement Advantage Equity Release, said: “We’re thrilled to have David on board. He’s been at the regulatory coalface with the FCA as our industry has moved into the mainstream. Equity release is gaining popularity and new products and features are helping the sector to become an attractive option in an increasing number of circumstances.”

Forsdyke said it was an exciting time for Retirement Advantage and the equity release industry as a whole.

At a mortgage conference held by the FCA this week, the director of strategy and competition Christopher Woolard said a debate was needed on the viability of expanding the equity release market. He said there was a question mark over whether equity release’s tarnished reputation of the past was putting new firms off entering the market.

“…in the not too distant past, equity release became a dirty word,” he said. “While we have seen a combination of regulation and industry-led initiatives to help clean up the market some will argue that the costs of equity release, both up front and compounded over time, are relatively high for the individual and that the previous image has stuck.”

The regulator said it planned to meet with the industry and consumer bodies throughout autumn to examine the options which are available to borrowers who want to unlock the value in their homes.

Woolard’s comments angered the chairman of the Equity Release Council Nigel Waterson who said the poor perceptions of the quality of equity release plans were ‘extremely outdated’.


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