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Christmas crackers: Our pick of the best 2017 reader comments

  • 12/12/2017
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Christmas crackers: Our pick of the best 2017 reader comments
Some of the most interesting and insightful comments on industry issues come from you, our readers, so we've selected a few of our favourites on the site this year.

Posted by Tony Silver on: FSE: Portfolio rules hand brokers risk for not reporting landlord tax avoidance

We are mortgage advisers, not tax experts or even worse tax collectors. It’s wrong to potentially blame us for the mistakes of landlords and inability of HMRC to run their own affairs.

The answer is to make all landlords join a National Landlords Register, declaring all rental income which is then run and monitored by HMRC, rather than forcing us to do their dirty work.

If you think about it, landlords should already be on the HMRC radar, due to the increase of Stamp Duty on buy to lets. Exactly why they should expect us to do their work, just smacks of laziness on their part.


Posted by James Lindon-Travers on:  Network chiefs warn ‘poor advice’ and two-year churn throw up Brexit exposure risk

Eighteen months ago, when in some cases there was just 0.25% between a two-year and a five-year fixed, clients would often choose the five-year deal as the difference was so small. With buy-to-let business down by 40% across the board, lenders are attracting business by having a rate war and using two-year fixed-rates as the battleground.

Clients, especially in the South East, tell me that a 0.65% difference is too big to ignore and often go for a two-year deal. So, really, it isn’t the adviser driving two-year churn, it is the lender.


Posted by Duncan Jones on: The conundrum of maturing interest-only customers

This is an area where creative advice is needed.

While one component will be to explore the opportunities to allow the client to stay in their home, another should be to challenge whether they need to. Most are empty nesters occupying an expensive to maintain property who could benefit from reduced running costs as well as a smaller mortgage payment or no mortgage at all.


Posted by Robert Gill on: Mortgage brokers are missing business opportunities (on seconds)

To a regulated mortgage adviser seconds have always the been the third option. If capital raising is required you’ll look at the possibility of a remortgage first. If a remortgage isn’t possible you’ll then look at a further advance. Only then if neither of those options are feasible, you’ll then move onto a second.

I have just made my first second charge mortgage referral in over two years to help a business owner raise capital to pay a tax debt and keep his first charge interest only base +1% mortgage intact. A perfect case for a second if ever there was one. Unfortunately, however, these cases are rare.


Posted by John Scott on: Don’t blame brokers for not embracing seconds – TFC

He said: “I agree that traditionally high fees put brokers off considering seconds but the biggest problem for me is the lack of direct to broker lenders.

“This means in the main having to deal with packagers where poor service, lack of knowledge and misleading information prevail and if you couple this to the fact that most still want to communicate with my client directly and expect original client documents (passport, driver’s licence etc.) to be posted to them.

“I wouldn’t send original documents myself but I am expected to ask clients to do so. Are we living in the dark ages?”


Posted by Mart Crox on: Young Brits feel shut out of homeownership

I just did a first-time buyer case for a couple aged 22 and 20 on £13,852 & £6,746. Both had a car for work but had managed to save the 10% deposit from their incomes over the last few years because they didn’t spend, spend, spend.

I didn’t charge a fee due to being so impressed with their attitude, this couple were a breath of fresh air from the usual unpaid debts and defaults for several phone contracts etc. that I have to work around.


Posted by Andy Wilson on: Let’s not kid ourselves – equity release rates are important

I can’t remember when an equity release client ever told me straight they weren’t going ahead because it was too expensive an interest rate. Reasons for not proceeding include not wanting to erode the inheritance, disproportionately high set up costs and so on, but never that the interest rate was too high.


Posted by Elizabeth Fleming-Duffy on: Accountants argue sellers paying Stamp Duty would boost housing market

Surely this change would see millions of homeowners effectively being double taxed for the same home? I think the government and lenders have done enough to assist first-time buyers. And of course this switch would encourage people to retain properties, rather than selling to move – keeping values higher due to lack of supply.


Posted by Mark Ninnim on: Fifth of UK estate agents on brink of insolvency

This is no surprise when you look at how the ratio between number of estate agents to number of transactions has changed.

Let’s hope that small agents recognise that offering a good financial services solution can make a huge difference to profitability.


Posted by Andrew Montlake on: What you most dread hearing from clients


The questions we dread are those that give away the fact that the client is trying to play the system. They include:

How much can I borrow? (I don’t want to give you any details just want a rough idea)

Do you have to tell the lender?

What credit reference agency does the lender use?

How much do I need to earn?

You get paid by the lender, right?





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