This week the accolade goes to Andy Wilson for his response to the post: Broker comparison tool could put many advisers in a ‘hellish situation’ – Marketwatch.
He said: “I would not support a broker comparison tool without some very careful consideration of what types of comparisons are to be used.
“You cannot, for example, simply use something like the level of broker fees charged.
“Does a higher fee buy you a better service? Or does a lower fee work better? When you consider the broker has to make a living somehow this could lead to inappropriate sales of other allied products paying commission instead.
“Number of complaints against the firm? Or against the actual adviser? Outcomes of these complaints? Upheld or not? If the complaints are about delays in processing cases, is this as bad as complaints where a material loss has been made? (Obviously not).
Distort lenders used
“One of the metrics I use a lot in placing a mortgage is the ‘total repayable over a product term’, which can lead to some usual suspects being used far more than others.
“This would distort the number or range of lenders used, to an extent.
“However, I would argue the outcome for the client is better over this given term than using a more expensive lender – but this makes no measure of the quality of service provided in getting an application approved.
“Sometimes I have to abandon the actual lowest cost lender in favour of a lender who will actually get the job done quickly, and once again there will be tried and tested lenders here too.
Which qualification is better?
“On qualifications, I hold CeMAP and also a DipPFS. I don’t hold the advanced diploma in mortgages.
“However, which is best – someone higher qualified in just mortgages or someone who holds a higher qualification in all round financial planning?
“Surely the extra knowledge of other financial matters that could affect mortgage borrowers is very relevant, including taxation, pension ages (in relation to mortgage terms) and so on?
“And finally – who is going to collate all of these metrics and ensure they are properly applied?
“And of course – who is going to pay for it?”