Editor's Comment: Self-regulation

Editor's Comment: Self-regulation


Back in the office at 7am this morning after last night’s Omni Capital dinner - with bridging’s finest host, Bob Sturges – was no mean feat, but what a wonderful evening. So, first and foremost, a big thanks to Omni.  

Taking a look back at the market, news in recent weeks has spotlighted the lending practices of certain bridging firms, underlining the absolute importance of adequate due diligence. 

Inevitable discussion about the regulation of bridging has resulted and, as the dawn of the FCA nears, the future regulatory landscape of the industry is again one of the hot topics of discussion.

The temptation remains – at least on a macro level – for a knee-jerk response to irresponsible lending through implementing stringent regulation; a reaction which some critics believe necessary with the apparent reluctance for the whole industry to work together to produce its very own code of conduct.

Without viable self-regulation the FCA will have little choice but to seek to address further areas of the sector; only by working together more effectively can bridging continue to march to the beat of its own drum.

This cannot happen until a conversation about what the industry considers acceptable and unacceptable has begun; the first step towards this should be collectively recognising and condemning those who do not uphold the high standards maintained by most bridging firms.

Industry trade bodies will certainly help to facilitate this conversation and the work they do will be essential in lobbying a self-imposed set of industry wide standards; the astl Value Charter appears to have had this aim at its heart, yet its impact remains to be seen.

The arrival of the long-awaited MMR rules has brought some educated observations of the market and the introduction of some positive requirements, particularly with regard to advised sales; while most advisers already operate in this way, the necessity to provide advice can only support a smoother deal process with no nasty surprises.

The FSA’s report appears to have had much less of a heavy fisted and clumsy affect, as was expected, and bridging’s very own chapter has emphasised that the industry is becoming an essential addition to the financial services.

On a much broader scale, the high street has made a significant nod towards the bridging market by providing large funding facilities to alternative lenders. This news undoubtedly shows that mainstream banks are recognising the bespoke service offered by bridging lenders and signalling that they cannot substitute it.

The high street lender who will be next to foray into the bridging sector remains to be seen but what is clear is that bridging is becoming an essential part of the financial sector with recognition from mainstream lenders and the regulator.  

At B&C, we’re excited about what’s next for the year ahead, including our brand new site in 2013.

I can also exclusively announce that B&C is running a Christmas promotion starting next week, so keep your eyes peeled!

All the best in the run up to Christmas, and do get in touch if you have any news or concerns.


Alexandra Jones


You can contact me at

[email protected]

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