Michael Stratton

New bridging lender MS Lending Group completes over £1m of deals in first month of trading



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A new lender offering unregulated bridging finance on both residential and commercial properties has already completed 10 deals, totalling circa £1.5m.

MS Lending Group now has a “strong” pipeline of over £3m of cases, which it expects to complete within the next eight weeks. 

The lender officially launched in January 2021 by managing director Michael Stratton (pictured above), who previously spent over 10 years working at Together in commercial underwriting roles.

The business aims to provide “one-week completions” and be flexible on valuations for loans of a certain size. 

MS Lending Group’s product guide includes:

  • up to 75% LTV on residential purchases
  • up to 70% LTV on a residential capital raise
  • up to 70% LTV on HMOs
  • up to 65% LTV on semi-commercial and commercial (excluding land)
  • up to 50% LTV on land
  • maximum loan size of £3m
  • up to 12-month term as standard, up to 18 months available on request
  • second charges available on request.

There is no minimum term restriction or loan size.

MS Lending Group also does not need a valuation on loans of up to £500,000 for residential purchases. 

For residential capital raises, a valuation is not needed up to £100,000. 

The lender — which is backed by “ambitious investors” and personal investment — offers rates from 0.95% per month, with a 2% arrangement fee and an exit fee of one month’s interest. 

“Most lenders have a minimum loan size; at MS Lending Group, we don't,” commented Michael. 

“I have many new clients who are coming to me because they cannot find anyone to do [smaller] deals because they have such strict criteria.”

As an example, the lender is set to complete on a £74,000 deal today for a property investor in the North West.

“…When you look around at a lot of the auction houses throughout the UK, especially in the residential market, there is a massive amount of purchases that are below the £100,000 or £75,000 mark,” he added.

“It's really important that, as a business, [and] although we have a criteria, we're highly responsive to our customers’ needs and adaptable to the ever changing property climate.”

Michael claimed that lending up to £500,000 for purchases without the need for a valuation was a gap he had seen in the market.

“It’s also my experience [in] underwriting; my job has always been to mitigate the business’s risk against the reward and what the customer is looking for.

“To touch on Covid, people have been let down [and we] have seen some uncertainty in the market — so there is a need for quick finance, being able to react quickly [and] work without valuations.

“The criteria that I have got set out enables the business to do that.”

He added that while the business has a product guide, it will still look at every case on its own individual merits.

“This is key to our business; real people, making real decisions.”

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