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Skipton advanced £1.9bn of mortgages in H1

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  • 27/07/2016
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Skipton advanced £1.9bn of mortgages in H1
Skipton Building Society lent £1.9bn in the first six months of 2016, mirroring last year's figures and driven by intermediaries which placed 95% of the mutual’s gross mortgages.

The UK’s fourth largest building society increased savings balances by £1.1bn, up 43% over the last three years to 30 June 2016.

The mutual launched a six-month mortgage retention fee pilot in April with Connells and London and Country ahead of plans to extend fees to all brokers by year-end.

Paul Darwin, director of intermediary relationships, said: “Good and appropriate customer outcomes are central to this pilot and we recognise that brokers carry out a full advice process with our customers, including appropriate market research before making a recommendation to the customer to stay with us.

“It is, therefore, only right to pay a procuration fee on retained business,” he added.

The mutual has introduced a web chat service for brokers and extended opening hours during the week and on Saturday mornings, which Darwin said is particularly useful for new-build cases and estate agency introduced business. Intermediaries will see further improvements to application processing software this year, added Darwin.

Plans to integrate retirement and investment planning service Skipton Financial Services into the mutual will complete on 1 August 2016.

The society said the integration will allow Skipton to support more people who need help with financial planning, together with offering a more seamless customer journey for all financial planning matters.

The mutual’s total group profit before tax in the first six months was £76.8m, including the contingent consideration of £9.6m from the 2014 sale of Homeloan Management.

David Cutter, Skipton’s group chief executive, said: “Skipton has delivered another strong performance during the first six months of 2016, achieving net customer growth of 20,389, climbing 11 places to 47th position in the Sunday Times Top 100 Companies to Work For, and being named Best Cash ISA Savings Provider and Best Savings Account Provider in the 2016 MoneySuperMarket ‘Supers’ awards.”

Skipton subsidiary Connells arranged £4.3bn of mortgages in H1, against £3.5bn in the first six months of 2015.

The estate agency saw an increase in half year profits of 15% to £31.3m from its 600 nationwide branches.

Connells Group CEO David Livesey, said: “Our business has produced solid results in the first half of this year and in a remarkable market.”

“We started the year with great momentum and strong sales activity, and with extraordinary levels of completions in Q1 ahead of the stamp duty deadline. However, as expected, there was a notable cooling in the market as the EU referendum approached.

“Brexit has created some short term challenges, but we excel against our competitors in tough market conditions and we are already seeing performance bounce back to pre-Brexit levels.”

 

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