The comment was made at the Finance Professional Show at Olympia London today (6th November) during a panel discussion on bridging finance, which covered competition and risk, lending hotspots, the future of short-term finance as well as what to know in the current financial climate.
In addition to Jonathan, the panel also included Taylor Gwilliam, senior manager at EY Corporate Finance (third left); Sundeep Patel, head of London intermediaries at Together (third right); Alice Williams, head of property finance at Pilot Fish (left); Beth Fisher, editor at Medianett (right); and Lizzie Lane, head of lending at Masthaven (second left).
When the panel was asked what the outcome would be if the current rate of lenders entering the bridging lending market continued over the next five years, Jonathan stated that you couldn’t look beyond the next five weeks.
“Well, we certainly have had a lot of new entrants and that is partly reflected in the absolute boom in terms of the lending in the industry.
“…It's quite significant — partly due to new entrants — although I guess quite a lot of the growth has come from the incumbents, the largest lenders,” he added.
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“[However, when you mention looking at the future and beyond] to be perfectly honest, I don't think we can look beyond the next five weeks — we've got a general election in the next five weeks and, quite frankly, if we get a Corbyn-led government, then I don't think we're going to be talking about new entrants, I think we'll be talking about leavers in this space.
“…I genuinely believe that the impact of a Labour government on, not just bridging, [but] the mortgage industry as a whole, will be incredibly negative.”
Sundeep added that increased competition in the market was beneficial as it gives the consumer more choice, but agreed we couldn’t look too far forward.
“It has made more [people aware] of our market, which is good, [but] I wouldn't look too far ahead and the instability, particularly economically, is a big factor.”
Lizzie added: “…Yes, we've had a lot of new entrants, but we have had companies leave the industry ... it keeps us on our toes.
“It means that we're constantly looking to strive to [offer] the best service, keep our rates competitive and it means that we're constantly looking to innovate our products.”