The growth in so-called niche or non-standard borrowing requirements over the past few years has shattered many notions of mainstream lending profiles and rendered great swathes of existing options obsolete.
For example, the impact of an ageing population and the break down in traditional pension schemes has led to an explosion in equity release products over the past two years.
Uptake levels and the availability of products have more than doubled in that time.
Meanwhile the swelling ranks of the self-employed have also dominated demand for specialist mortgages.
Develop closer relationships
Research by the Aldermore Bank revealed that more than 30% of self-employed homeowners consider the high street mortgage process to be biased against them.
However, this group now represents 15% of the total UK workforce, or roughly 4.8 million people – up one million since 2008.
Brokers are often left floundering when confronted by these groups, as well as the limited availability of products to meet their circumstances, and this is why the need to develop closer relationships with specialists is so important.
Shifting market realities
Tapping into a level of know-how and awareness of market conditions which fall outside of most conventional skill-sets and offering a range of services which reflect the shifting realities of our society.
For example, 70% of all buy-to-let mortgage applications are now made via limited companies, yet their borrowing requirements differ vastly from those of portfolio landlords.
Some brokers may feasibly have some awareness of these issues, but the chances are that the majority will not.
Which is where specialist advice comes into play. Because specialist products and the people who they cater to are not niche anymore – they both represent a significant part of the new mainstream.