service levels

Lower transaction levels boosting lender service, brokers reveal

With reduced transaction levels freeing up capacity and allowing applications to progress, brokers have reported to Newspage that lender service levels are better than ever.

Rachel Marlow,  director at Marlow Mortgages & Protection, said: “The cloud of reduced purchase transactions has a silver lining of improved lender service levels.

“Gone are the days when you’d be on hold for well over an hour or using a live chat facility.

“I have also found recently that lenders are starting to update brokers on cases with outbound calls again.

“Having the opportunity to discuss cases with an underwriter directly gives the client the best experience as the result is smaller wait times.”

Reacting on Instagram, Emma Jones, managing director of When The Bank Says No, said: 

Anil Mistry, director at RNR Mortgage Solutions, said: “The service levels provided by lenders are currently exceptional.

“By way of example, I recently submitted an application with Accord in the morning and, to my surprise, they contacted me just a couple of hours later, requesting additional information.

“Typically, this process would take several days, but their prompt response was truly impressive.

“It’s worth noting that the volume of applications is not as high as it once was due to the current economic climate.

“It will be fascinating to observe whether this high level of service will remain once business levels return to normal.”

Reacting on TikTok, Andrew Montlake, managing director at Coreco, said:

@mortgagementormonty #mortgages #mortgagebroker #mortgagelender ♬ original sound – Mortgage Mentor

Ross McMillan, owner at Blue Fish Mortgage Solutions, agreed that service levels have improved, but questioned how long that would last when the property market starts moving again.

He said: “There’s no doubt that for the majority of lenders, the reduced level of transactions has allowed them to get their underwriting and assessment process working much more efficiently and swiftly than had otherwise often been the case.

“There are exceptions of course, particularly for those lenders with systems seemingly still using 1980s technology.

“Also, more complex cases can still take a little time to work through the system but overall it’s very welcome that most lenders have been able to demonstrate they can consistently deliver a quality service.

“The question will be whether this quality of service can be maintained when business levels pick up in future.”

Steven Hargreaves, mortgage and protection adviser at The Mortgage Co, said conveyancing was still an issue.

He said: “Long gone are the hours on hold and 20 working day underwriting responses. While we are experiencing fantastic turnaround times from lenders, unfortunately the same cannot be said about conveyancing solicitors, where delays are still an issue.

“However given that the average transaction takes around 17 weeks from start to finish, I expect conveyancing turnaround times to start improving as sales from a few months ago complete and solicitors haven’t received the same level of new instructions in the last few months.”