Mortgages  

Mystery Shopper: Leeds

This week, the mystery shopper visits Leeds. The shopper is seeking advice on equity release schemes on behalf of his 76-year-old grandfather, who owns a three-bed semi-detached house with an estimated value of £200,000.

Adviser (Independent): 2plan Wealth Management, 3rd Floor, Bridgewater Place, Water Lane, Leeds, LS11 5BZ

Speed of response:
Time of call: 2.26pm. The call answered was after four rings. 5/5

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Telephone manner:
Professional. 4/5

Relevant qualifications:
Level four diploma with ER1 – equity release (CII) – qualification. 5/5

Payment method:
A basic charge is £175 an hour. 5/5

Guidance given:
The adviser said that the shopper’s grandfather was of the right age to secure an equity release scheme, although he would need to speak to him before offering guidance. He would be unable to provide tailored advice until a client agreement was in place. 2/5

Knowledge:
The adviser’s cursory responses made it difficult to gauge his level of knowledge on the topic. 1/5

Email/web presence:
darren.pickersgill@2plan.com
www.darrenpickersgill.2plan.com

5/5

Verdict:
Good, although the adviser came across as overly professional and disinterested in the topic at hand.

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Adviser (Independent): The Financial Planning Centre, 655 Scott Hall Road, Moortown, Leeds, LS17 5PD

Speed of response:
Time of call: 2.34pm. The call was answered after two rings. 5/5

Telephone manner:
Friendly and engaging. 5/5

Relevant qualifications:
Level four diploma with ER1 – equity release (CII) – qualification. 5/5

Payment method:
A charge of £750. 5/5

Guidance given:
The adviser said that the shopper’s grandfather was at a good age to secure an equity release mortgage. He said the grandfather could potentially secure a loan to the value of £85,000, based on his age and value of three-bed semi-detached homes in Leeds. The adviser added that because of the negative press equity release mortgage loans have received in the past, he only endorsed those accorded the Safe Home Income Plans (SHIP) standard. 5/5

Knowledge:
The adviser appeared extremely knowledgeable on the topic – showcased by his in-depth explanation of the inception of SHIP. 5/5

Email/web presence:
louis@thefpc.net
www.thefpc.net 5/5

Verdict:
Excellent and highly recommended. The adviser gave the shopper comprehensive and detailed guidance in a clear and concise manner.

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Adviser (Independent): B L M Partnership, 95 Aberford Road, Oulton, Leeds, LS26 8SL

Speed of response:
Time of call: 3.04pm. Call answered after five rings. 3/5

Telephone manner:
Polite and friendly. 5/5

Relevant qualifications:
Level four diploma with CeRER – Certificate in Regulated Equity Release (IFS). 5/5

Payment method:
An £895 minimum fee. 5/5

Guidance given:
The adviser said that equity release is generally a good idea, adding that withdrawing bank savings would most likely be the first port of call because equity release schemes have considerably higher interest rates. The product is not the best option for those who seek to pass on the property to a beneficiary, he added. 4/5

Knowledge: The adviser displayed comprehensive knowledge of equity release, explaining that the value of the loan can fluctuate according to the value of the property. 4/5

Email/web presence:
stevesale@blm-group.co.uk
www.blmifa.co.uk 5/5