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By Michelle Westley

  • 350 mortgage declines every day
  • Brightstar to push for smarter FCA advice rules
  • Provide support to brokers across all specialist sectors

Brightstar Financial is today launching a campaign to help ‘Credit Crushed’ borrowers who too often miss out on achieving their dreams because of a broken financial system. The specialist distributor, which is on course to hit £1bn of annual specialist lending completions in 2017, is launching the ‘Could You? Would You? Should You?’ campaign to raise awareness of the thousands of borrowers who wrongly believe they can’t get the finance they need.

We see ‘Credit Crushed’ borrowers as those who are turned down for mainstream deals, or have complicated requirements but are unaware of the specialist options available to them meaning they don’t get the finance they need. We know that in 2016 there were 350 declines a day for the mortgage sector alone*. And this just scratches the surface as it does not include those turned down before application or declines from various other property loan sectors.

The issue isn’t limited to mortgage advice. It is happening across the specialist sector. It happens for those in broken chains or those looking to finance housing repairs, for example. We will be campaigning over the coming months designed to boost the role of advisers and lift the burden on those borrowers. Brightstar will be launching a lobbying campaign and producing detailed research on broker and consumer trends. This will involve shaking up any complacency at the regulator, parliament, banks, advisers and borrowers themselves. We must work together and do more to stop the disenfranchisement of borrowers.

It is impossible for brokers to cover every single offering in every specialist area but there is without doubt, a moral obligation to make consumers aware of what is available to them. We feel that the impact of not receiving the right advice or guidance is overlooked by all involved in the industry and the effect on these consumers could be devastating.

While the majority of brokers are doing a fantastic job, our experience is that there is still a significant minority that are closing the door unfairly and on that basis we will be petitioning for the regulation of advice via the FCA and the Treasury.

FCA regulation does not go far enough in expanding mortgage advice across all finance options. “This campaign means supporting Credit Crushed borrowers across the specialist loan market. This goes beyond mortgages,” said Michelle Westley, head of marketing at Brightstar Financial.

“It means telling the FCA and Treasury to fix their rules to ensure all borrowers are given access to professional advice on the full range of options, not just mainstream products. “And it means educating consumers about the role of specialist finance and the innovative solutions available to them.”

Brightstar wants to remind brokers that, instead of turning these clients away, call on the expertise of a specialist and use them to assist you through the application process, or indeed pass the case over on a referral basis. Brokers will be appropriately remunerated as well as helping more clients, even for referring a name and number.

*Magellan Homeloans research