The underwriters will now receive enquiries and provide terms, underwrite the application and then oversee the case through to drawdown of funds.
Andrew Lazare, managing director of Mint, told Specialist Lending Solutions that the lender had been “evolving” towards this structure over the last 12 months, as it was clear that intermediaries valued being able to speak to the decision makers.
As a result, over that time it had stopped the recruitment of sales people, but “beefed up” its underwriter numbers.
Lazare explained: “We did bring in sales people, and they would look at a loan, look at the offer terms, and then go to the underwriters who would have to look at it all from the beginning.
“It’s very inefficient and not a great experience for the broker or the borrower. You may have a sales person say yes, we can do that, but things don’t work out.”
He added that this structure allowed the firm to educate the introducers it works with on why it may say no to certain cases. This means that Mint is then more likely to get enquiries from advisers who understand what it can and cannot do.
Lazare continued: “Brokers can differentiate us from our peers as with us they can have a sensible conversation with an underwriter, and they have continuity as they can always speak to the same one. I’m not sure how many lenders our size can offer that on every transaction.”
Mint said that the new structure will allow Sinead Moynihan, the head of sales, to focus more on relations with broker partners.
Moynihan said: “By giving our partners direct access to underwriters, who will act as both underwriter and relationship manager, we expect to be able to provide them with the service which they desire.
“This is the first of a number of changes we are making to our structure, processes and products, with further announcements to come very soon.”