BLSMEXPO 2014: Eight week wait for consumers

Speaking at the Blimey Loans Scotland Mortgage Expo in Edinburgh this morning Sinclair said that the direct market was suffering severe time delays as lenders put their staff through the required training and compliance procedures ahead of April 26 and the implementation of the Mortgage Market Review.

He told a packed conference room: "We're going through what you might call a bit of a hiatus at the moment. All spoken or interactive dialogue will have to be advised and that's going to have a large impact on non-advised sellers and telephone operations."

Sinclair went on to say that lenders might try to reduce their product ranges in order to attempt an execution only proposition.

But he warned: "I do think that the regulator [the Financial Conduct Authority] will say that it's an advisory process that is required."

He went on to question whether the new income and affordability rules meant that smaller brokers would be dead in the water and that it would trigger a rise of support services.

But he added: "Pure mortgage networks are now in the strongest place they have ever been and will only get stronger. As for the IFA? Well I think the true IFA model is dead as who can say they offer true independent advice across everyone in the investment world."

Sinclair - in a veiled attack on the level of consumer protection now being enforced and the hoops brokers now have to jump through - also pointed out that, at the end of the day, "the customer does not care".

"They just want the house," he said. "Or they want to keep the house and don't worry too much about the cost as 'the wife just told me to do it'."

Ending the session Sinclair also warned of more regulatory changes to come as the UK heads towards the now non-negotiable European Mortgage Directive. Although that has a 2019 time implementation frame, the AMI chief was adamant lenders would be putting their houses in order by 2016.

He said: "There are massive system changes that will come by March 2016 as the ESIS [the document that will replace the KFI] deadline draws closer."