Brokers left angry as TMW gives just six hours notice of rate changes

Brokers have once again raised concerns about short-notice product changes from lenders after The Mortgage Works (TMW) issued an email at 14:00 advising brokers they had until 20:00 tonight to lock in existing rates.

TMW is increasing selected new business rates across its buy-to-let and large portfolio product ranges. Its limited company, HMO, and let to buy product ranges remain unchanged.

In its note to brokers, TMW said: “You can secure any current products available via TMW Online by submitting a Full Mortgage Application (FMA) by 8pm today, Friday 1 March.”

Free news agency Newspage asked brokers for their take.

Amit Patel, adviser at Trinity Finance:

“This is getting beyond a joke now. Lenders must give brokers a minimum of 24 hours’ notice before increasing rates. Surely they have a duty of care not only to the borrower but also to brokers?”

Robert Timm, managing director at Sunland Mortgages:

“It’s brilliant that this practice is being highlighted here, because it happens far too often, and sometimes with even less notice than The Mortgage Works are giving here.

“Brokers are being given a choice of abandoning their clients, or abandoning their family on an evening. So much for broker welfare.”

Julie Bayley, independent financial adviser at Fordham Financial Services:

“It’s very unfair of any lender to give a few hours’ notice of rate increases, especially when Swap rates are showing signs of reducing.

“It makes our job as mortgage advisers even more stressful. I just spoke to our BDM at Pepper Money, as I have a DIP with them at the moment, and he told me they are committed to giving brokers 48 hours’ notice for rate changes. I wish all lenders would do likewise.”

Justin Moy, managing director at EHF Mortgages:

“Lenders will say that they need to make changes quickly due to pricing constraints, but there are some lenders that offer 24-48 hours’ notice, and they have the same funding concerns.

“This makes it tough for borrowers to make quick decisions, and I would imagine the support teams won’t be on the end of a call or email at 20:00 to help brokers?”

Imran Hussain, director at Harmony Financial Services:

“It is now becoming an absolute joke. All advisors across the country are asking for is some due care and attention so we can at least inform our clients and give them some time to make a reasonable decision and not feel pressured.

“We all hoped 2024 would be better but it’s much of the same from 2023.”

Mark Robinson, managing director at Albion Forest Mortgages:

“Lenders should have to give a minimum notice period for pulling rates across the board. It’s beyond a joke that we only get a day’s notice most of the time, let alone a few hours’ notice.”

Rohit Kohli, Director at The Mortgage Stop commented:

“It’s so frustrating receiving an email like this at 2pm on a Friday. As brokers we have to fullfil our consumer duty obligations and then need to work extra hard to get the best outcome for our clients to meet these ridiculous timeframes. Enough is enough. 24 hours should be mandated and the FCA needs to step up to protect borrowers from these types of changes as it clearly puts pressure on borrowers to make a decision or face losing out.”

Scott Taylor-Barr, Principal Adviser at Barnsdale Financial Management commented:

“I very much doubt this decision was made this afternoon and relayed to brokers. The lender knew it wanted to increase rates earlier in the day and it waited until 2pm to tell the market. Asking brokers to now work until 8pm, at short notice, is unfair; they won’t have asked their broker support staff to be working until then in case of any issues we experience.”