Finding your own way in the new environment

We are all working hard to adapt, evolve and innovate how and where we can.

Finding your own way in the new environment

Neal Jannels is managing director of One Mortgage System (OMS)

We all realise that all businesses had to adapt to new working practices and individuals have had to embrace a range of tech platforms and mediums to engage with their loved ones. Of course, technology was rising to the forefront way before any lockdown, but its importance has been further highlighted during these tough times.

In the past, the mortgage market has been criticised for being behind the tech curve and, in many instances. this was completely justified.

The truth is, we are all finding our own way at the moment to deal with our new environment but what we all have in common is that the vast majority of solutions and outlets revolve around some form of tech. So, let’s take this opportunity to take a brief look at some recent tech-related news relating to the intermediary mortgage market.

We’re seeing the launch of a host of webinars, online events, virtual roadshows and updates all across social media to outline how firms are coping with difficult trading conditions and to offer additional support to their advisers, clients and strategic partners.

Knowledge Bank has added second charges and bridging to its COVID-19 live feed as an increasing number of lenders change products or pull lending in these sectors. It has also added a raft of new categories for residential and buy-to-let.

Impact recently launched their specialist lender update advising on who remains live and proactive in the more specialist areas, including maximum LTVs, full valuation or AVMs and mortgage payment holidays.

Connect has just completed its first academy for new brokers on a virtual basis. The virtual academy involved a full week of 'live' training online, with 15 different presenters covering how to fact find, research and present solutions, not to mention how to utilise software such as OMS.

Like many networks, clubs and specialist distributors, Primis Mortgage Network has launched a new support hub to help its AR firms during the COVID-19 crisis. This includes real-time information on both lender and market updates, including the latest product rate and criteria changes and the most recent government guidelines regarding COVID-19.

United Trust Bank has launched a new digital security check process for first and second charge mortgage customers. An update on the standard practice of completing security checks by telephone, UTB has introduced a digital, 24/7 process that uses its Nivo app.

Pure Retirement has introduced desktop valuation solutions for the majority of its lifetime mortgage products. And lenders across all market sectors are investigating a range of tech-based solutions to overcome the current valuation issues facing the industry.

Here at OMS, we are now offering free access to Knowledge Bank with every OMS license. We have also developed an API integration with Iress’ Lender Connect software.

This offers just a taste of what a variety of firms across the mortgage market are doing to better support the intermediary community and generate solutions which can keep the wheels of business turning.

This is no easy task, but we are all working hard to adapt, evolve and innovate how and where we can. And these positive tech steps will certainly stand the industry in great stead once we get through this unprecedented period – which we will.