97% of brokers happy to work with unregulated bridging lenders

Nine in 10 brokers plan to increase their bridging business in the next 12 months, with 97% more than happy to work with unregulated lenders, according to a new report.

A survey conducted by Hope Capital found that for more than half of brokers, bridging already made up at least 20% of their business, with one in 16 saying more than 80% of their business was bridging.

“Brokers are now turning to bridging lenders for a wide variety of reasons, often because the high street is not offering the solutions they need or they are hoping for a more tailored service,” said Jonathan Sealey, CEO at Hope Capital. 

“At Hope, we have seen the level of lending increase significantly over the past year and – like the survey suggests – expect to see it continue to increase into 2019.”

The report also found that one of the biggest causes of delays in the completion of a bridging loan was the speed of the client’s solicitor, with almost a third of respondents citing this as an issue.

Other issues included collating information from the client and getting approval from lenders.

In addition, Hope found that 20% of brokers had a lack of understanding or knowledge of the bridging process.

Some 52% of brokers thought flexibility on LTVs should be a priority in terms of issues that they wanted to see addressed, while 48% would like lenders to consider lowering rates and improving the speed of service.

“Like any area of lending, there are areas that brokers would like to see improved, and we are keen to address these by always offering the fastest turnaround times and ensuring we are always transparent and flexible,” added Jonathan.

“The call for lower rates is likely to be a never-ending one, however. 

“Rates – including our own – have dropped substantially in the past few months and bridging loans are up to 3% cheaper than they were a few years ago, but while it’s natural that brokers always want them to be lower still, bridging rates will never be the same as mainstream, as every loan is underwritten manually.”

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