High street lenders failing borrowers

British consumers have criticised the lack of value and impersonal “computer says ‘no’” approach of high street lenders, accusing them of failing millions of borrowers.

According to new research, Britons think the attitude of high street lenders toward borrowers with anything but the most straightforward of finances is unacceptable.

The criticism follows a survey of 2,000 UK adults, which found people were less than impressed with the value offered by the high street lenders.  Three times as many people believe they can get a better deal from a mortgage broker than a high street lender. 

Almost two thirds of those interviewed believe high street mortgage lenders are failing to meet the needs of borrowers with more complex circumstances, such as those with multiple income sources, property rental income or simply having school fees to pay.

The vast majority of consumers feel the attitude of so-called mainstream lenders towards more complex financial positions is unacceptable.  Nearly three quarters of those who took part said refusing to lend to someone simply because they were self-employed or had multiple incomes was not fair.

Many people believe there is an over-reliance on computers to make lending decisions, with two out of three saying this means lenders are failing to help people based on individual circumstances.  In fact, respondents were twice as likely to feel that lenders with underwriting teams who deal directly with cases are better able to understand customers’ individual needs and circumstances.

Pete Thomson, sales and marketing director at The Mortgage Lender, said:

“These results are quite damning.  Consumers are seeing through the headline mortgage rates they see on the high street, and recognising better deals and greater understanding of their situation lies elsewhere.

“Mortgage brokers can identify the right lender and the best deal for any circumstance, that’s clearly something people recognise and value.  On average, a third of our customers qualify for our lowest rate. So, while TML might be known for working with customers with complex circumstances, brokers know we can challenge many of the deals borrowers see on the high street.”

TML is an intermediaryonly lender that covers a wide range of borrower circumstances, from full-time workers with clean credit histories through self-employed, contract workers and borrowers with complex incomes to those with adverse credit histories. 

Until the end of April, TML will make a donation to charity for every new decision in principle it issues.

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The Mortgage Lender Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (Financial Services Firm Reference Number 707058). Registered in England & Wales as company number 9280057. Registered office address: Fifth Floor, 100 Victoria Street, Bristol BS1 6HZ.