The Openwork Partnership adds four lenders to mortgage panel

The Openwork Partnership adds four lenders to mortgage panel

 

The network said the panel’s expansion is designed to meet growing demand across the mortgage market due to changes and increasing complexity in residential and buy-to-let property markets. It explained that the recent pandemic meant that lenders were dealing with clients who had more complicated income and employment histories and credit issues.

Paul Shearman, proposition director for mortgages and protection at Openwork, said that the four new lenders were “fantastic additions” and would  “help even more clients in the changing mortgage market”.

He added that the panel offered the best support from across the industry and its direct panel relationships accounted for 96 per cent of all mortgage lending in the UK.

 

Lender overview

Foundation is an intermediary-only mortgage specialist for owner-occupiers with more complex needs and buy-to-let mortgages for portfolio and non-portfolio landlords, limited companies and individuals, expats, and short-term lets.

George Gee, commercial director of Foundation Home Loans, said it was “delighted” to have been added to the panel and it looked forward to working with brokers and supporting the network’s growth in specialist residential and buy-to-let sectors.

Landbay focuses on buy-to-let for first-time landlords,  limited companies and a wide range of property types.

Paul Brett, managing director for intermediaries at Landbay, said it was looking forward to providing market-leading products, such as its green mortgages for new builds, to Openwork’s appointed representatives. 

Pepper Money offers residential and buy-to-let products, and caters to customers with complex income, self-employed, short credit histories and previous financial blips or adverse credit.

Paul Adams, sales director at Pepper Money, said that joining the panel would help the firm bring its individually underwritten mortgages to a broader group of clients, including the self-employed and those with complicated income, short credit histories or previous financial blips.

The fourth new member is Vida Homeloans, which offers residential and buy-to-let loans for clients with impaired and improving credit. It also supports specialist properties including former local authority houses, flats, and properties above commercial premises. 

Richard Tugwell, Vida’s director of mortgage distribution, said that Openwork was a “respected player in the market”, and it was pleased to offer its advisers more options for clients with complex financial needs. 

After a period of rebranding and expansion, Openwork currently includes more than 4,300 financial advisers across the UK. It was founded in 2005 and its mortgage division operates a panel of 39 lenders, including the recent additions.

Homeowners in favour of cheaper mortgage rates based on EPC – Foundation Home Loans

Homeowners in favour of cheaper mortgage rates based on EPC – Foundation Home Loans

 

However, according to research conducted by BVA BDRC on behalf of Foundation Home Loans, less than half of the 300 respondents said they would look at improving their home’s EPC rating to access a better mortgage product. 

Some five per cent said they would be incentivised to make renovations if they paid for themselves in 15 years, while a quarter said they were planning works to improve their EPC rating regardless of any future benefits. 

George Gee, commercial director at Foundation Home Loans, said: “There’s no doubting we’re going to be seeing a much greater government focus on the UK’s housing stock, how its energy efficiency ratings can be improved, and how that might help the UK meet its carbon emission targets. 

“To that end, there appears to be a far greater appreciation of energy efficiency within the home from individuals, and it’s positive to see two-thirds of all those polled saying a mortgage product with rates based on EPC ratings would be an appealing part of the overall product mix.” 

He added: “At the same time, with such incentives in place, more people are likely to consider improving the energy efficiency of their properties and it’s therefore important we have product availability that can support those improvements, whether for owner-occupiers or landlords. 

“As an industry, we need to continue to keep this front and centre, and ensure we can offer advisers and their clients these ‘green’ options, which can provide a significant cost-saving for borrowers.” 

Foundation Home Loans adds 85 per cent LTV BTL products

Foundation Home Loans adds 85 per cent LTV BTL products

The maximum LTV previously was 80 per cent and the lowest was 65 per cent.

The products are in its F1 range, which is aimed at clients with an almost clean credit history, and includes a two and five-year fixed rate. The two-year fixed rate is priced at 4.79 per cent and the five-year fixed rate is at 4.99 per cent.

The products have no product fees and are available for limited companies, individuals and portfolio landlords.

There is a minimum property value of £125,000 and rental income for the five-year fixed rate is determined at the pay-rate.

George Gee (pictured), commercial director at Foundation Home Loans, said: “In terms of pre-Christmas presents for the adviser community and their landlord clients, we don’t think it gets any better than Foundation increasing our maximum LTV and being able to offer 85 per cent LTV products on buy-to-let for the very first time.”

He added that the expansion came as a result of strong demand for increased LTVs. He said as it had no product fees and many types of landlords were eligible, he hoped it would “go down well with advisers”.

Gee said: “Landlords continue to look at the current property market, with strong tenant demand and yield, as an opportunity to grow their portfolios and, as a specialist in this sector, we believe our range can help them fulfil their ambitions via their trusted advisers.”

The lender has been making a number of changes to its offering, including adding two 90 per cent LTV house purchase fixed rate and two products to its professional range.

It also launched six times income products for professional borrowers in November.

Foundation Home Loans adds high LTV and five-year professional products

Foundation Home Loans adds high LTV and five-year professional products

The 90 per cent fee-assisted rates are offered without an application or product fee, with a free valuation, fixed for two years at 4.74 per cent and 4.94 per cent for five years.

The additions to the professionals range include a five-year fixed-rate option at 3.39 per cent to 75 per cent LTV and 3.99 per cent at 85 per cent LTV. The range allows first-time buyers, home movers and remortgagors in eligible professions to borrow up to six times income.

The professionals products come with a £1,495 product fee, one standard valuation, and are available on a capital and interest repayment-only basis.

George Gee, commercial director at Foundation Home Loans, (pictured) said: “As always at Foundation we want to respond to feedback from our intermediary partners and provide product options to support them in areas of the market relevant to their current client demand.”

He said these new fee-assisted residential products at 90 per cent LTV will help those owner-occupier borrowers who want to benefit from lower upfront costs and who are looking for a higher LTV product over either a two- or five-year term.

In September, Foundation Home Loans brought out buy-to-let (BTL) limited edition products for both individual and limited company borrowers and launched six times income products for professional borrowers in November.

 

Foundation Home Loans offers six times income multiple to professionals

Foundation Home Loans offers six times income multiple to professionals

 

The deals allows home movers and first-time buyers in eligible professions to borrow up to six times their income. The deals are also available to borrowers remortgaging.  Options include a two-year discount product that has no exit penalty and a two-year fixed rate. Both come with one free standard valuation and a maximum loan size of £750,000 up to 85 per cent loan to value (LTV), including first time buyer deals.

The professional products add to Foundation’s range of residential mortgages for owner-occupiers with complex income or a need for specialist underwriting.

Foundation defines a professional as someone currently practicing and holding the relevant qualification. A maximum of two applicants per mortgage are permitted and only one needs to be an eligible professional. Foundation’s list of eligible professions includes accounting, actuarial, medical, legal, surveying, architecture and engineering.

The two-year fixed rate is offered at 2.99 per cent up to 75 per cent LTV and 3.84 per cent up to 85 per cent LTV.  The two-year discount product is set at 2.84 per cent up to 75 per cent LTV or 3.69 per cent up to 85 per cent LTV. Each deal comes with a free valuation and a flat product fee of £1,495.

George Gee (pictured), commercial director at Foundation Home Loans, said: “Foundation Home Loans is committed to continuously developing and widening its proposition to cater for different types of borrowers with complex needs. We have the expertise to individually assess incomes and we can, for some clients such as professionals, apply enhanced multiples.

“We believe these products offer an additional choice to borrowers who have secured their professional qualifications. The enhanced income multiple we are able to use for these borrowers should allow them to access a wider range of property options.”

More awareness towards complex credit options is needed – Gee

More awareness towards complex credit options is needed – Gee

 

Close to our industry ‘home’ we’ve seen the final throes of the stamp duty holiday – partial in nature for the last few months and ultimately only available in England. It delivered at most a £2,500 saving, which undoubtedly helped some, but would have been a minimal driving force for housing transactions, particularly in the last four to six weeks of it.  

Many have welcomed the return to ‘normality’, and it’s true that we are now getting a much better idea of the medium to longer-term future for the UK housing market because the holiday has fully ended. 

The second deadline to be hit and passed was that of the furlough scheme and this clearly has the potential to have a much more sizeable impact for many more people and businesses, albeit in the context that the numbers on furlough have been dropping consistently for some months.  

At the end of June, there were fewer than two million people on the furlough scheme. Now there are none, but we await to see how many of those individuals will be returning to their old – or new – jobs. 

There will be people who unfortunately do not have a job to go back to, and it’s also clear the pandemic has had an impact on the finances of many people. The good news however is that the worst predictions of what Covid might unleash on the economy appear not to have been met.  

 

Financial impact on tenants 

Foundation carried out a survey focused on the housing aspirations of both existing homeowners and renters. It was encouraging to learn the vast majority of people had not experienced any negative financial impacts as a result of the pandemic, although self-employed people were three times as likely as employed individuals to have taken out a government grant or business loan. 

And the further good news is that very few people say they have been declined for a mortgage, in-store finance, an unsecured personal loan, or a credit or store card when they applied for them.  

The importance of access to finance and credit can’t be underestimated.  

Lenders want to lend, have the funds to do so, and are actively looking at borrowers who might traditionally have been under-served.  

What we can inform and educate borrowers and potential borrowers more on, is their increased ability to access mortgage finance, even if they have credit issues or are concerned about their finances during or post-pandemic.  

Almost one in four say they’re worried about being approved for a mortgage in the future, citing concerns such as a poor credit history or score and a low or unstable income as the top worries. 

 

Options are available 

However, the availability of mortgages for those who might not have a clean credit score or have recent credit blips has grown considerably. We should know, as we’ve been offering these mortgages for some time, and there is a flexibility in terms of accepting multiple incomes or other types of income that might not have been there the last time the borrower sought a mortgage.  

Or they simply might not be aware of these product options, if they’ve never secured a mortgage before. 

So, there is clearly a need to keep banging the drum about specialist lending options and what is achievable for all types of borrowers, especially after a period when some borrowers might be worried about the impact on their finances and how this might be perceived by a lender.  

We certainly don’t want prospective customers to think that a mortgage can’t be secured, especially when their product choice has grown considerably. 

 

Foundation Home Loans brings out BTL and resi EPC-based green mortgages

Foundation Home Loans brings out BTL and resi EPC-based green mortgages

 

On the BTL side the lender has introduced three five-year fixed rates, available for purchase and remortgage, with its EPC A product priced at 3.14 per cent with £750 cashback.

Its EPC B product has a rate of 3.19 per cent with £500 cashback, whilst its EPC C product comes with a 3.24 per cent rate and £250 cashback.

The loan to value (LTV) is capped at 75 per cent and a 0.5 per cent fee applies. The maximum loan size is £1m. Its interest coverage ratio is 125 per cent times pay rate.

Owner-occupier borrowers can access two-year fixed rates at 75 and 85 per cent LTV. All products have a £595 product fee. The maximum loan size for 75 per cent LTV is £1m, falling to £750,000 at 85 per cent LTV.

Its EPC A product at 75 per cent LTV is priced at 3.04 per cent, 3.09 per cent at EPC B and 3.14 per cent for EPC C.

At 85 per cent LTV owners of properties with an EPC rating of A can access a rate of 3.84 per cent. Its EPC B and EPC C products are priced at 3.89 per cent and 3.94 per cent respectively.

EPC A products have £750 cashback, whilst EPC B and C products have £500 and £250 cashback respectively.

George Gee, Foundation Home Loans’ commercial director (pictured), said: “We want to encourage and reward those homeowners and investors who make the conscious choice to buy energy-efficient properties, or improve those which they currently own.”

He added that energy efficiency of UK housing would become more important to the government’s green agenda and it would “remain committed” to innovating green products.

Foundation Home Loans introduces limited edition BTL deals

Foundation Home Loans introduces limited edition BTL deals

 

The no-fee two-year fixed rate product has a 3.24 per cent rate, while the five-year fixed rate is pegged at 3.34 per cent.

Both are available up to 75 per cent loan to value (LTV), and it has no product or application fees and has a free standard valuation.

It is aimed at landlords looking to purchase or refinance.

The limited edition flat-fee two-year fixed product is priced at 2.79 per cent, and the five-year has a rate of 2.99 per cent. They come with a fee of £1,995 and are available up to £500,000.

Interest cover ratio is calculated at pay rate for five-year fixed rate products and at a notional rate of 5.5 per cent for two-year products.

It is stress tested at 125 per cent for limited companies and basic-rate taxpayers and 145 per cent for other landlord types.

George Gee (pictured), Foundation Home Loans commercial director, said: “These new limited edition BTL products are highly competitive on both rate and fees, providing an attractive overall total cost to those landlords either seeking to add to portfolios or to refinance.

“Given that we have no limit to the size of the background portfolio of the client – subject to £5m borrowing with Foundation – we believe these products offer intermediaries a good value option for their portfolio and non-portfolio landlords.”

Foundation Home Loans and TML launch limited edition BTL products

Foundation Home Loans and TML launch limited edition BTL products

 

Foundation Home Loans has launched a fee-free limited edition owner-occupier remortgage product, along with a limited edition buy-to-let (BTL) deal.

The remortgage product is available up to 75 per loan to value (LTV), with its two-year version priced at 3.19 per cent and its five-year pegged at 3.49 per cent.

It has a minimum loan size of £200,00 and is available on a capital and interest basis. It has no product or application fees and comes with a standard valuation.

The limited edition BTL products are also available up to 75 per cent LTV and are eligible for both purchase and remortgage. Individual and limited company landlords are eligible.

The two-year fixed rate is priced at 2.94 per cent, while its five-year fixed rate stands at 3.14 per cent. It has a flat fee of £1.995 and there is no minimum loan size.

George Gee, commercial director at Foundation Home Loans, said that borrower interest in products with lower upfront costs was growing, which was why it launched its remortgage product.

He added: “With highly competitive interest rates we believe these new limited editions will provide advisers with a set of options to fit a number of client demographics.

“The flat fee option for landlords also means these BTL limited editions are highly competitive on total cost and will interest landlords who specifically want larger loan amounts.”

The Mortgage Lender adds HMOs to limited edition BTL products

Elsewhere, The Mortgage Lender has added houses of multiple occupation (HMO) and multi-unit blocks (MUBs) products to its limited edition range.

The five-year fixed rate for HMOs and MUBs is available up to 75 per cent LTV and has an initial rate of 3.58 per cent.

The lender has also cut the rate for its limited edition five-year fixed rate aimed at individual and limited company borrowers to 3.2 per cent. This is a fall of 0.11 percentage points.

The completion fee for its limited edition range has fallen to one per cent, and all come with standard valuation fees and a £150 application fee.

Steve Griffiths, sales and product director at The Mortgage Lender, said: “Our limited edition BTL products are designed to make it easier for brokers and landlords to refinance and add to their portfolios.

“Adding HMO and MUB properties to the mix gives landlords looking to purchase or remortgage those buildings access to competitive five-year rates and reduced completion fees, bringing down the overall cost of refinancing or purchasing while allowing them to leverage by borrowing up to 75 per cent LTV.”

Foundation Home Loans slashes BTL rates and fees

Foundation Home Loans slashes BTL rates and fees

 

The product fee on all its two-year fixed rate mortgages has been halved to one per cent while the five-year fixed F1 and F2 standard property product fees have been reduced by 0.5 per cent to 1.5 per cent. 

Rate reductions include the five-year fixed homes in multiple occupancy (HMO) offering at 75 per cent loan to value (LTV). This has been cut to 3.44 per cent. 

The large HMO or multi-unit block (MBO) five-year fixed product at the same tier has been reduced to 3.54 per cent. The five-year fixed product for short-term let at 65 per cent LTV has gone down to 3.74 per cent. 

The lender has also released a short-term let product with a flat fee. 

This is a five-year fixed deal with a fee of £1,495. It is available at 65 per cent LTV at a rate of 3.94 per cent and 75 per cent LTV at 4.29 per cent.   

George Gee, commercial director at Foundation Home Loans, said: “We have been able to significantly reduce the product fees across our two and five-year fixed rates while maintaining, and in many cases even reducing, rates. This new buy-to-let product range with lower percentage product fees is designed to reduce the total cost of the loan for buy-to-let borrowers. 

“Due to the popularity of flat fees across the rest of our range we’ve also introduced a five-year fix which comes with a £1,495 fee for those purchasing or remortgaging short-term lets, again designed to keep down the overall cost of the loan.”