The mutual will be implementing the affordability assessment through products which will be available from Monday 14 September.
It will start off with two products, one at 60 per cent loan to value (LTV) for interest–only and the other limited to 75 per cent LTV for capital repayment applications. These will be subject to tranche limits to manage demand and operational capacity.
The launch coincides with the introduction of a mortgage prisoner’s portal hosted by the Money and Pensions Service that is due to go live in the coming week.
This portal follows a call to action led by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which asked brokers to sign up to the list to identify themselves as available to help mortgage prisoners source and apply for new deals.
Borrowers who believe they might be eligible under the new assessment can access the products initially through the West Brom’s direct mortgage advisors and intermediary partner Mortgage Force. The mutual will then be expanding the range to any intermediaries that have signed up to the Money and Pension Service portal.
In order to qualify, borrowers must provide evidence that they are in a closed book or held by an inactive lender. They must also be eligible under the FCA’s new affordability rules which require mortgage payments to have been made for 12 months with no arrears.
Jonathan Westhoff, West Brom BS chief executive, said: “We recognise that this is just the beginning and there is a lot more work that needs to be done by both lenders and intermediary firms, to help those people who have been stuck on a mortgage product for a number of years already.
“The West Brom can only make a small difference, but we hope that we can at least start the process of helping by creating a more active market, supported by more affordable products.”