Together raises maximum age to 85 following increased demand

Together raises maximum age to 85 following increased demand


As the shortest mortgage the lender offers is over a three-year term, this effectively means borrowers can be as old as 82 when they take out a new home loan, it said.

Pete Ball (pictured), personal finance CEO at Together, said the maximum age increase would help borrowers working later in life, people needing finance following a divorce or those in their 50s and 60s coming to the end of interest-only deals.

He said: “We’re increasing the maximum age at the end of the loan in response to what we see as a growing demand and more lenders need to follow suit.

“Together can take a common sense view of each application, looking at other sources of income – such as pensions and investments – as well as salaries of people working past pension age.

“Provided the customer can afford their repayments, we’ll consider lending to brokers potential clients in their 60s, 70s or early 80s.”

Together said between July 2016 and July 2019, the number of funded applications it received from customers aged 65+ had “more than doubled” across its personal finance business.


Searches up 23 per cent

It noted that after the financial crisis of 2008, many mainstream lenders cut back on the number of mortgages they offered to borrowers over the state pension age of 65.

This meant that even with enough retirement income to meet repayments, many mortgage borrowers would be unwilling or unable to offer them a loan into their 70s.

According to figures released by data provider Moneyfacts in January, there were 1,078 mortgages on the market that allowed the customer to take their loan past their 80th birthday.

Melanie Spencer, head of lender relationships for Twenty7Tec, said the number of searches by brokers whose clients were aged between 55 and 85 had increased 22.7 per cent in the past 12 months alone.

Meanwhile, Andrew Montlake, of mortgage broker Coreco said the days of retiring with a mortgage paid off at 65 seem to have been “consigned to history.”

He said: “For those that have a provable income in later life or pension income that demonstrates affordability, there is no reason why they should not be able to extend their borrowing capacity later in life.

“Some do this because they want to use equity to invest, purchase rental investments or various other uses.”


Uinsure partners with Twenty7tec

Uinsure partners with Twenty7tec

The tie-up means users of the MortgageSource and MortgageApply system will be able to produce general insurance quotes via Uinsure’s Application Programming Interface (API) for every mortgage case.

Once brokers have entered the client’s basic details within mortgage sourcing, they will see a general insurance quote returned alongside the sourcing results.

David Smith, chief innovation officer at Uinsure, said that in recent years mortgage advisers have been “unable or unwilling” to compete against comparison sites, leaving borrowers “under served”.

He continued: “The best advice, experience and products are now in the adviser’s hands at point of mortgage advice delivery to provide better customer outcomes for all.”

Phil Bailey (pictured), sales director at Twenty7Tec, said that they had chosen to link with Uinsure as “ their ethos, desire and capabilities in the technology space closely mirror ours”.

He added: “We are delighted to add this service to MortgageSource and bring real value to the mortgage intermediary. Both businesses are passionate about delivering the best experience to advisers and their customers.”

Keystone launches full API integration with Twenty7Tec

Keystone launches full API integration with Twenty7Tec


Brokers using the system, including Mortgage Advice Bureau, will submit both an API and full application directly into Keystone Property Finance without the need to re-key client information.

Additionally, the broker will be able to track and update any submitted application via MortgageApply.

David Whittaker, CEO Keystone Property Finance (pictured), said: “At Keystone we are always looking for ways of using technology to improve the customer journey for our brokers.

“We have now successfully integrated with Twenty7Tec’s Mortgage Apply system allowing brokers to submit full applications directly to us via the platform. This has been an exciting project for us and one we hope will have a great benefit for our brokers.’’

Phil Bailey, sales and marketing director at Twenty7Tec, said: “Keystone have been a pleasure to work with, delivering real benefits through the integration of technology.

“This link is all about the intermediary, removing much of the heavy lifting, re-key of data and adding efficiencies.’’

Peter Brodnicki, CEO of Mortgage Advice Bureau, said: “Using technology to significantly enhance the customer and broker experience is a priority for MAB, which is why we have backed Twenty7Tec’s plans for MortgageApply from the outset.

“We are extremely pleased to see so many lenders planning their launches this year. The future has arrived, with many more exciting developments to come.”

Twenty7Tec keeping Open Banking process on hold until lenders ready

Twenty7Tec keeping Open Banking process on hold until lenders ready


The mortgage technology provider also explained that it was already planning five years ahead for what the mortgage market may look like by then.

Speaking at the Building Societies Association annual conference, Twenty7Tec head of lender relationships Melanie Spencer agreed Open Banking had potential but was slow to get started.

“It’s having trust through the process, who’s going to accept that data from that source,” she said.

“That’s a challenge we have at Twenty7Tec.

“We have got Open Banking on our road map, but we’re not doing anything with it yet until we know lenders will accept it.”


Not going to stop there

Spencer noted that she expected to see a significant amount of change in market technology over the next three years.

“We’ve been talking a lot about application programming interfaces (APIs) and we’ve not quite got there yet – even though we’re talking day in and day out to lenders about them and connectivity,” she continued.

“In the next 12 months to three years we’re going to see a big change in connectivity and digitalisation around the mortgage process.

“But I don’t think it’s going to stop there, it’s going to continue growing. We’re thinking five years down the line on what changes will come and hopefully just get better as time goes on,” she added.


Kensington completes application integration with Twenty7Tec’s MortgageApply

Kensington completes application integration with Twenty7Tec’s MortgageApply


Mortgage Solutions exclusively revealed last month that the lender was just a “couple of weeks” away from finalising the application programming interface (API) link.

Users of MortgageApply will now be able to submit decision-in-principle applications to Kensington directly from within the system, without the need to re-key data onto the lender’s portal.

The integration will be rolled out initially to firms within Mortgage Advice Bureau (MAB), before a full roll out to all Twenty7Tec MortgageApply users over the coming months.

A further 11 lenders are expected to join the platform through 2019 which were revealed by the firm in February.


Speed up the process

Kensington Mortgages CEO Mark Arnold (pictured) said the lender was delighted to have completed the process which would provide a more simplified and streamlined journey for brokers.

“We are always looking for ways to speed up the loan process and make it as easy as possible for brokers to work with us,” he said.

“This is particularly important in the specialist sector where applications are generally more complex.”

Twenty7Tec CEO James Tucker noted both teams had worked exceptionally hard to deliver the integration.

Mortgage Advice Bureau CEO Peter Brodnicki added: “We are extremely pleased to see a lender of the quality of Kensington Mortgages choosing to partner with MortgageApply.

“We are delighted to see so many lenders planning their launches this year. The future has arrived, with many more exciting developments to come.”


The darker side of innovation – Twenty7Tec

The darker side of innovation – Twenty7Tec


Advances in technology that on the one hand are of great benefit to you can also be of huge value to others. Allies, partners, competitors. Within every opportunity is a threat.

How you adopt, adapt and utilise innovation will be critical in how the mortgage landscape evolves over the next few years. Where will you fit into this 2,000 piece puzzle of regulation, innovation and change?

There has been plenty of noise around the FCA’s statements on its Mortgages Market Study. The darker side of innovation has started to show, uncovering some of the reasons why we are wary of change and disruption.

Some 500 years ago, Nicola Machiavelli outlined this predicament perfectly in his book on the art of politics, ‘The Prince’: “There is no more delicate matter to take in hand, nor more dangerous to conduct, nor more doubtful in its success, than to be a leader in the introduction of changes. For he who innovates will have for enemies all those who are well off under the old order of things, and only lukewarm supporters in those who might be better off under the new.”

In other words, innovation isn’t easy and don’t expect to please everyone.

Many things need improving in our industry. Single data entry, application submission, the black hole that is conveyancing, the removal of wet signatures and the need to print anything, all desperately need sorting. Luckily… there are a few firms working to better the industry in these areas.


Advice is valuable

I’m confident that customers gain huge value from the mortgage advice they receive. Have you ever noticed that even mortgage brokers deal with mortgage brokers? Surely if mortgage advice is good enough for a knowledgeable and qualified mortgage professional, it’s valuable for the average borrower too.

There is plenty of focus at the moment on upfront eligibility, calculators and credit scores. Why the hurry to start treating mortgages as credit cards?

Over the past few weeks, I have lost count the number of times ‘multi-DIP’, ‘execution-only’ and ‘guided advice’ have come up in conversation. Aggregators, traditional, digital and hybrid brokers, all fall into the industry’s definition of ‘intermediary’, and yet all will have very different wish lists when it comes to change and the regulator’s view on innovation.

Some will see the threats, others the opportunities.

Customers are rightly demanding more from the mortgage world. The regulator is suggesting potential changes to the advice rules, investigating changes for more accommodating, technology-led execution-only models labelled as “innovation”.


Industry lagging behind

As an industry we have been lacking in innovation for some time. From the depths of the downturn the mortgage industry, regardless of the number of products, gross lending levels and lending appetite, survived and recovered rather well.

But this new challenge by the regulator could mean more competitive change is coming, and coming fast.

So I ask myself, have those that have stifled innovation or have shown a lack of appetite to embrace technology and change brought this demand in innovation, unwittingly to their own doorstep?

Like many, I’m equally intrigued and apprehensive of what happens next with ‘innovation’ for mortgages, especially regarding advice.

My thoughts to the industry, be you traditional broker, digital guru or even the regulator – be careful what you wish for, as innovation has a way of suddenly changing an entire landscape, when all you really wanted was a new signpost.


Lenders publish time to Mortgage Apply go-live; Connells confirms shareholding in Twenty7Tec

Lenders publish time to Mortgage Apply go-live; Connells confirms shareholding in Twenty7Tec


At the event at the Gherkin yesterday, introduced by Stephen Smith, Twenty7Tec CEO James Tucker told the audience it had either signed contracts or confirmed its intent to sign a contract for Mortgage Apply at varying levels of integration with 15 of the top 30 UK lenders.

HSBC and Nationwide are the two top six lenders not listed at this stage. (see below)

The event was simultaneously a ‘call to arms’ for the mortgage industry to collaborate and innovate now before out-of-sector technology providers or aggregators move in, said participants.

Connells will roll out Mortgage Source and application programming interface (API) enabled software Mortgage Apply, to its advisers by the end of 2019 after integration into its client relationship management tool.

Three other distributors, including Sesame Bankhall Group will also roll the two Twenty7Tec systems out to its advisers. PMS, however, stated that Mortgage Brain remains its ‘preferred system’ but will offer the alternative software to users for £10 a month.

Meanwhile, St. James Place has agreed a five-year deal on both Twenty7Tec systems to over 4,000 advisers with integration into its core system. LSL has agreed a similar deal for its 2,000 advisers, with rollout due to complete by 2019-end.

Lender partnerships

Twenty7Tec also fleshed out its plans to roll out software partnerships with a series of mortgage lenders this year, with some unable to commit to a timeline.

The lenders have agreed different levels of service packages, with some opting for software that offers decision in principle, full mortgage application and case tracking and others will offer the full package, including document transfer, status updates, third party integrations and a secure chat functionality between broker and lender.

Twenty7Tec said ideally every lender will eventually move to this model once all their APIs become available.


Timelines for system adoption supplied by Twenty7Tec:

1. Lloyds Banking Group – Q3 Target – decision in principle (DiP), full mortgage application (FMA)

2. Barclays – Q4 target – All functionality

3. Santander – Q4 target – DiP

4. Natwest – Q2/3 target – DiP, FMA, case tracking

5. TSB – Q4 target – All functionality

6. Yorkshire Building Society – Q4 target – All functionality

7. Skipton – Q4 target – All functionality

8. Precise – Q2/3 target – All functionality

9. Kensington – Q2/3 Target – All functionality

10. Foundation Home Loans – Q3/4 – All functionality

Platform, Aldermore, West Brom Building Society, Together and The Mortgage Lender have yet to announce timelines but intend to aim for all functionality.


Distributor panel

A panel of mortgage firms and networks, including Mortgage Advice Bureau, LSL, Sesame Bankhall and Connells, laid out their views on the strategic importance of technology and innovation in the market.

Ben Thompson, managing director at MAB raised the spectre of the travel industry and said while he understood why some may not want to make technology moves first, sitting it out entirely is not an option. He added that the relationships mortgage brokers and lenders have now must be strengthened, adding it’s so important ‘we get that right.’

Adrian Scott, group mortgage services director at Connells Group, said there were three reasons his firm had chosen Twenty7Tec’s software.

“The relationships and the people at Twenty7Tec have been a breath of fresh air for us with their ‘can do’ attitude across their business,” said Scott. He continued that the quality of the technology and ‘seamless integration’ were also key alongside the concept of the Mortgage Apply software.

Sesame Bankhall COO Martin Schultheiss observed that time is the single biggest asset a company has, so cutting out re-keying will allow advisers more advice time and also allow multiple sources in one hit.

“As lenders face down pricing pressures and risk, ultimately, we as advisers need to also stay relevant as we face the aggregators,” he added.

LSL group financial services director Jon Round said: “It might be worth just taking a little bit of a step back here, as we sit at the top of the Gherkin admiring the view and discussing what a brilliant step forward for the industry this is. Ultimately, this is really just about establishing some of the basics that should be in place.”

Round added that the automated flow of data between brokers and lenders is instead supported by an army of administrators re-keying information. “It’s really quite a crazy place to start from,” he said.


Sesame Bankhall signs technology deal with Twenty7Tec

Sesame Bankhall signs technology deal with Twenty7Tec


Sesame appointed representatives (ARs) will be able to use Twenty7Tec’s MortgageSource and MortgageApply systems.

They will also be available to directly authorised members of Sesame’s PMS Mortgage Club for £10 per month.

SBG has an existing partnership with MortgageBrain, which PMS Mortgage Club said was its preferred mortgage sourcing system.

MortgageBrain Classic and MortgageBrain Anywhere will continue to be offered to PMS and Sesame members, although SBG did not confirm how long this would be for.


Single platform sourcing

MortgageSource enables advisers to source across mortgages, secured and bridging loans and equity release products, on one single platform.

MortgageApply was launched last year with the aim of helping mortgage advisers to complete and submit applications to multiple lenders from one single platform, without the need to re-key client data.

Advisers can submit documents, case notes and receive status updates all the way through to completion of the case.


‘Crucial’ solutions

Commenting on the new partnership, Martin Schultheiss, group managing director of SBG, said: “Mortgage sourcing and electronic application submission solutions are crucial for advisers, and we have been impressed by Twenty7Tec’s technology capability and vision.

“Helping our members to operate more efficiently will in turn release valuable advice capacity, meaning that advisers are better placed to look after their customers’ full range of needs.”

The partnership is the latest addition to Twenty7Tec’s growing portfolio, following its deal with Tenet, which was announced in October.

James Tucker (pictured), CEO at Twenty7Tec, added: “SBG has a clear vision of the role that great technology should play in helping advisers deliver the best possible solutions to their clients.

“We look forward to working with them to make that vision a reality for their AR and DA members.”

Twenty7Tec and Dudley BS strengthen teams – roundup

Twenty7Tec and Dudley BS strengthen teams – roundup



The move comes as the firm continues the expansion of its national account management and intermediary support teams and Cooke will manage the growing field-based relationship team and strengthen key accounts.

Jake Tucker joins the business as national account manager, reporting to Niki Cooke, who previously worked in field-based roles for both iPipeline and Paymentshield, will support the roll-out of both MortgageSource and MortgageApply in the north.

The company said staff numbers at Twenty7Tec grew by over 50% in 2018, and the company continues to recruit heavily with a further 14 roles currently available.

James Tucker, CEO at Twenty7Tec said: “I am delighted to welcome Niki, Jake and all of our new colleagues to the team at Twenty7Tec. The pace of technological change in the mortgage market is accelerating like never before, and we are determined to have the right team in place to deliver both the best software, and the best possible service to our customers through this time.”

Meanwhile, Dudley Building Society has appointed Samantha Ward as head of commercial.

The role encompasses responsibility for the society’s business development, marketing, product and growth strategy.

Ward has previously held positions as head of savings, strategy and change and latterly head of lending and reports directly to chief executive Jeremy Wood.

Reporting directly to chief executive, Jeremy Wood, Ward will be responsible for the delivery of the society’s proposition to its key stakeholders.

Wood said: “I am delighted that Sam accepted the appointment. This is a vital role which will help to shape the society’s future lending proposition. I am confident that with all of her experience and ability, Sam will be instrumental in taking DBS to the next level.”

Twenty7 Tec added to Ekeeper CRM system

Twenty7 Tec added to Ekeeper CRM system


The deal will mean Mortgage Keeper users can access Twenty7 Tec’s Mortgage Source and Mortgage Apply through the system.

Through MortgageSource users can search mortgages, secured and bridging loans, equity release and later life lending products.

MortgageApply enables mortgage intermediaries to complete and submit applications to multiple lenders without re-keying client data.

David Bennett, commercial director at Ekeeper Group said: “Twenty7 Tec is the fastest growing sourcing system in the market and leads the way in terms of development and innovation.

“The team’s plans for 2019 are hugely impressive and we are delighted that our users will be able to benefit from both MortgageSource and MortgageApply via an integration with MortgageKeeper.

“Integrating the Twenty7 Tec solutions will allow our users to address the needs of their clients efficiently and effectively, with results of the research and documentation being automatically stored against the client record.”

Phil Bailey, sales and marketing director at Twenty7 Tec added: “With more demand for integrated systems in the mortgage world than ever before, this partnership proves both businesses are listening to the needs of their intermediary users.”