Bridging and commercial adviser club launches with exclusive Castle Trust product

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  • 14/05/2019
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Bridging and commercial adviser club launches with exclusive Castle Trust product
Tony Bunting, managing director of advice firm Platinum Options, has launched the Bridging and Commercial Club for brokers operating in the sector.

 

The club has launched its first exclusive deal, pledged to hold panel lenders to its service level agreement and will be validating exit strategies proposed when advisers submit cases.

It will have free membership and be open to FCA-regulated brokers only.

Benefits include a dedicated help desk, preferential rates and exclusive deals, and service level agreements with all panel lenders.

The first exclusive deal has been provided by Castle Trust, with the lender offering a 70 per cent loan to value (LTV) net lending product with interest added to the LTV.

Brokers’ procuration fee via the club is 1.50 per cent and the client receives a further £500 cash back on completion from Castle Trust.

 

Sceptical of provider’s ethics

In a statement announcing the launch, Bunting said the origins of the club came in 2016 as he “remained sceptical about the ethics of some providers” and wanted to “get together a valued panel of lenders who had the right ethical approach and had become trusted by a broker fraternity”.

He added that it was important that club members should be “honest, experienced professionals who have the interest of the client at the core of their proposition and not just their own short-term financial gain”.

“There is no room in the sector for what I call ghost brokers, those who present a case with no exit facility and then just go absent without leave because they have no interest in their client, just their own pocket,” he said.

“For this reason, the club will be validating exit strategies to ensure that they are realistic, whether the property is being sold or refinanced.”

 

Solutions to funding needs

Bunting, who has 23 years’ experience in the industry, explained that he had been in discussions with lenders for the last 12 months.

“I challenged the lenders to convince me that they could provide club members with solutions to their funding needs in a market that was currently swamped with thousands of product choices, marketed to impress but often not as transparent as they first appeared,” he said.

“I wanted to develop an opportunity for brokers to believe that their owner-occupier, investor and developer clients were getting a good deal because the panel of lenders had a hard-won reputation for their transparency, flexibility, competitive pricing, service proposition and very importantly their experienced dedicated staff.”

Education will also be a key focus for the club and Bunting believes this could prove attractive to networks wishing to agree deals for their members.

Barry Searle, managing director of mortgages at Castle Trust, said it was exciting to be involved in an innovative project which was breaking new ground in terms of its proposition and bringing something useful to the market for brokers

“At Castle Trust, we choose our partners carefully but the decision to join forces with The Bridging and Commercial Club for its launch was easy,” he said.

“It will play an important role in continuing the growth of the sector through competitive offerings for its members and improving the sector’s public reputation.”

 

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