Virgin Money launches faster API-driven mortgage applications with MAB and Connells
The partnership will streamline the search and application process for intermediaries by removing the need to re-key data in multiple places.
Users can apply for a Decision in Principle from Virgin via this integration and submit a full mortgage application and payments without needing to visit the Virgin Money portal.
Available across residential and buy to let, for both purchase and remortgage customers, the technology will be rolled out to the wider market in early 2021.
Simon Wallace, head of mortgage integration and transformation at Virgin Money said: “At Virgin Money we have made no secret of our ambition to drive change and innovation in the mortgage market. This exciting partnership with Twenty7tec will play a key part in achieving that goal.
“The Apply platform will make it even easier for intermediaries to submit cases to us, saving them precious time, which could be better spent on helping their next client.”
James Tucker, CEO of Twenty7Tec, said: “Virgin Money has a great track record for innovating in the mortgage market and playing a huge role in delivering better customer service, so we’re over the moon to help them with this integration. As a result of this deal, Virgin Money Customers will experience a seamless experience from beginning to end – something which the Virgin brand is so closely allied with. We’re proud to be their partner in making the mortgage experience a little better for everyone involved.”
Ben Thompson, deputy CEO of MAB added: “This is a really progressive step, that we thoroughly welcome. Simplification of the mortgage process is very much needed, even more so in the current environment.”
Adrian Scott, group mortgage services director of Connells said it’s great to see another lender go live with the Apply system. “This will make writing business with Virgin Money far more efficient, which is always an attractive proposition for any broker, but particularly at this time when the market is so busy,” he added.
TSB adds 90 per cent deal and Virgin cuts rates – round-up
The product has a rate of 3.79 per cent, offers £500 cashback and will be available from tomorrow.
This is the first mortgage up to 90 per cent LTV the bank has offered to new borrowers since September when it launched a one-day tranche to first-time buyers.
Nick Smith, head of mortgages at TSB said: “We know that raising a deposit is often the biggest challenge our customers face when buying their first property.
“With the continued challenging environment, we have introduced a mortgage that will provide more help for our customers to buy their first home.”
Virgin Money makes rate cuts
Virgin Money has made a series of rate reductions across its mortgages up to 90 per cent loan to value (LTV), with cuts ranging between two and 25 basis points (bps).
For shared ownership borrowers with a 10 per cent mortgage, the two-year fixed with a £995 fee has gone down by 25 bps to 3.39 per cent.
A five-year fixed residential mortgage at 65 per cent LTV with a £995 fee has been reduced by 0.16 per cent to 1.45 per cent, while the three-year fixed equivalent now has a rate of 3.09 per cent, a reduction of 15 bps.
Additionally, two Help to Buy mortgages at both 55 per cent and 75 per cent LTV have been reduced by 0.02 per cent to 2.17 per cent. Both products have a fee of £995 and are fixed for five years.
Buy-to-let mortgages have also seen cuts of up to 0.23 per cent. Rates for core and portfolio borrowers now vary between 1.87 per cent at 60 per cent LTV and 2.08 per cent at 75 per cent LTV.
The changes are effective from 27 November.
Virgin Money braces for surge in bad debts while mortgage lending falls 30 per cent
Announcing its financial results for the year ended 30 September, Virgin Money reported its gross mortgage lending fell by 30 per cent year-on-year from £10.2bn to £7.1bn in what the group’s boss described as an ‘extraordinary year of disruption’.
The fall in gross mortgage lending was a combination of the closure of the mortgage market, and the bank’s decision not to aggressively compete with other lenders if the margins on pricing became tight.
The group also saw its loan book contract by three per cent to £58.3bn.
Bad debts preparation
The £501m provision for bad debts, said Virgin, reflected a “cautious approach to an uncertain economic environment”.
For mortgages alone, the group, which comprises Virgin Money, Clydesdale Bank and Yorkshire Bank, has set aside £131m, an increase of more than 225 per cent on last year.
Profits for the bank plummeted by 77 per cent to £124m.
The bank has granted around 67,000 mortgage payment holidays granted so far valued at £11.9bn, representing 20 per cent of all balances.
Around £2.5bn of mortgages, or four per cent of all balances are still currently on payment holidays after 98 per cent of borrowers returned to payments once their deferral period expired.
Virgin’s net interest margin fell by 10 basis points year on year to 1.56 per cent which the bank said was due to the new lending being below its average back book rates, as well the impact of the base rate cut to 0.01 per cent in March and excess liquidity costs due to higher level of savings deposits.
Over the course of the Virgin’s financial year, the bank launched its Home Buying Coach app to support first-time buyers through a mix of tools, calculators and guides.
David Duffy, chief executive officer, said: “It has been an extraordinary year of disruption for all of us. Our priority has been to support our customers and colleagues through this period, and we will continue to do so during the challenging economic environment ahead.
“While we are yet to see any material impacts of the pandemic on the credit quality of our loan book, our results reflect a cautious and conservative approach to the coming period as we refine our assessment of the uncertain economic outlook and the impact of the second lockdown.
“Although the vaccine news is a strong cause of hope for the future, the economic benefits are still some way off when considering the immediate reality of current restrictions and so have not yet been factored into our near-term forecasts.”
TSB reintroduces two-year fixes, Virgin cuts high LTV rates – round-up
The TSB reinstatement of two-year fixes comes at all LTV levels up to 85 per cent after removing them in October as part of a mass withdrawal of products.
The lender has only returned with fee paying products which are available on first-time buyer, house purchase and remortgage ranges.
For first-time buyers and movers the deals have a £995 fee and range from 1.39 per cent at 60 per cent LTV up to 2.99 at up to 85 per cent LTV.
For remortgaging there are £995 and £1,495 fee options with rates ranging from 1.19 per cent to 2.64 per cent.
Buy-to-let is still limited to five-year fixes for new business.
Virgin Money has cut selected rates across its residential and buy-to-let offerings – with high LTV deals seeing some of the biggest reductions.
For new business, selected 85 per cent LTV fixed rates have been reduced by up to 0.33 per cent.
At 65 per cent LTV a pair of five-year fixes with zero fee and £995 fee have been reduced by 0.49 per cent and 0.33 per cent respectively, while a five-year fix with £1,495 fee has been introduced at 1.42 per cent.
In buy-to-let, selected 60 per cent and 75 per cent LTV fixes have been reduced by up to 0.25 per cent.
The lender has also increased rates on product transfers with 85 per cent LTV deals rising by up to 0.41 per cent among the increases.
Bank of Ireland cuts high LTV rates, Clydesdale shrinks BTL range – round-up
Bank of Ireland has cut both its two-year and five-year fixes at 85 per cent LTV with £995 fee to 3.11 per cent – down from 3.23 per cent and 3.29 per cent respectively.
Meanwhile, the Post Office products at 85 per cent LTV with a £1,495 fee have both been cut to 3.07 per cent – down from 3.13 per cent for the two-year and 3.26 for the five-year deals respectively.
Meanwhile, Clydesdale Bank has made several product changes including as major withdrawal of buy-to-let (BTL) products.
The overhaul has left it with just seven new business buy-to-let products, only one of which is available at 60 per cent LTV and that is restricted to London and the South East.
The lender has also stopped accepting non-sterling income for non-regulated buy-to-let mortgages, a move replicated by its sister bank Virgin Money.
As part of the BTL cull, Clydesdale removed all BTL three-year fixes and all fee-free two-year and five-year fixes at 60 per cent LTV.
It also increased the 60 per cent LTV large BTL loan two-year fix to 2.19 per cent.
But a 75 per cent LTV two-year fix with £1,999 fee at 2.59 per cent was introduced.
From its residential range, Clydesdale withdrew three-year fixes for newly qualified professionals.
However, it introduced new two-year and five-year fee-free products at 75 per cent LTV and a five-year fix at 85 per cent LTV at 3.19 per cent.
It also increased rates on product transfers at 75 per cent, 85 per cent and 90 per cent LTV.
HTB appoints Paul Collyer as chief risk officer
Collyer (pictured) was previously risk director at Virgin Money for five and a half years and starts in the role next month.
Matthew Wyles, chief executive officer said: “Paul Collyer has an impressive track record with a broad palette of experience across the whole waterfront of risk disciplines.
“Having spent the last twenty years working with global banks, challenger banks and leading non-bank financial institutions, he has deep knowledge of HTB’s key lending classes and is a perfect fit for us. I’m really looking forward to working with him”.
Collyer also had several roles at GE Capital before Virgin Money.
Collyer said: “The specialist lending sector is the most dynamic segment of the UK banking market and HTB is an outstanding player in that market.
“I am really looking forward to joining the strong team in place and contributing to the achievement of HTB’s exciting growth plans.”
HTB’s current chief risk officer Clive Gavin will retire in December.
Virgin Money raises high LTV residential mortgage rates
The biggest increase on residential mortgage rates has been applied to the five-year fixed rate fee-saver deal available up to 75 per cent LTV. The deal has increased by 0.35 per cent to 2.43 per cent.
The 85 per cent LTV five-year fix has received a 0.25 per cent price hike to 3.44 per cent, along with the 65 per cent alternative which is now priced at 2.18 per cent.
The remaining rate rises are between 0.9 per cent and 0.20 per cent.
On the shared ownership range, rates have been increased by up to 0.30 per cent.
Both two-year fixed rates at 90 per cent LTV have been hiked by 0.30 per cent, pushing the fee-carrying deal up to 3.64 per cent and the fee-free option to 3.94 per cent.
After a 0.16 per cent increase, the five-year fix at 90 per cent LTV with a £995 fee is now 4.24 per cent.
Virgin Money launches high LTV deals and cuts rates
Four new products at 85 per cent LTV will be launched on 2 October.
Two-year fixes with £995 fee and zero-fee are being added at 2.82 per cent and 3.09 per cent respectively, while three-year versions are at 2.92 per cent and 3.14 per cent respectively.
The lender is also cutting rates on seven of its core residential products, including two five-year fixes at 85 per cent LTV.
These are being reduced by 0.09 per cent with the £995 fee version down to 2.94 per cent the and zero-fee option at 3.19 per cent.
Products at 65 and 75 per cent LTV are also being reduced.
Virgin Money is also cutting nine interest rates on its core buy-to-let range by between 0.04 and 0.3 per cent.
The largest cut is on the two-year fix at 75 per cent LTV with £995 fee which is falling by 0.30 per cent to 1.84 per cent.
Virgin Money joins Experian’s pre-qualified lender panel
The technology gives brokers and borrowers an early indication of which lenders will offer a loan by combining Virgin Money’s mortgage affordability requirements with Experian’s soft search software.
Users are given an automated decision about whether they match the mortgage lending criteria based on their credit history.
If the borrower is accepted they will told the maximum amount they can borrow.
Virgin Money’s standard residential and Help to Buy ranges are available on the platforms.
Brokers can use the system to narrow down the most suitable lenders for their clients.
Lisa Fretwell, managing director of data services at Experian UK&I, said: “Going through a lengthy mortgage application just to be turned down can be frustrating for everyone involved, not least the buyer who has found their dream home.
“By checking eligibility at the beginning of the journey, potential customers can see which mortgages they are likely to be accepted for based on their financial circumstances, while at the same time avoiding damage to their credit score.”
Virgin Money mortgage products are now available through pre-qualification platforms including Mortgage Gym, New Homes Group, Mojo Mortgages, Property Pal Mortgages and Iress Xplan Mortgage.
Lendex adds Virgin Money to roster of lenders
The multi-lender application lets brokers request decisions in principle or submit applications directly through to the lenders’ back office system.
Lendex has been developed by mortgage technologists Mortgage Brain. As well as Virgin Money, it has signed up Nationwide Building Society, Coventry Building Society, NatWest and Platform.
More lenders are expected to join this year.
“We continuously look to enhance our digital offering,” said Simon Wallace, head of mortgage transformation at Virgin Money.
“By committing to Lendex we are embracing technology advances to make life easier for intermediaries. We look forward to working collaboratively with Mortgage Brain to bring this to market,” he added.
Neil Wyatt, sales and marketing director at Mortgage Brain (pictured), said: “Momentum is building behind Lendex, with another big mortgage market player coming on board in Virgin Money.
“Lendex provides significant, tangible benefits to lenders and advisers, by streamlining the mortgage process and improving efficiency across the board.”