Northern Ireland’s largest independent retail mortgage and protection broker has joined mortgage and insurance network Stonebridge Group.
Siobhan McAleer, owner of The Mortgage Shop, which has 16 branches and 36 advisers and specialises in mortgages for first-time buyers, said joining the network would help the broker access competitive deals.
She said: “We are now amalgamating into the Stonebridge Group and the move will enable us to access the best mortgage deals out there.
“The bonus in joining Stonebridge is that we can now offer the same flexibility with insurance products such as mortgage protection, critical illness and home insurance.”
Ulster Property Sales, which has 11 offices across Northern Ireland and whose financial services arm is run by Ms McAleer, has also joined the network.
This comes as the Stonebridge Group added Scottish firm Access Mortgages (Scotland) Ltd, as an appointed representative.
According to figures from the Council of Mortgage Lenders, during the first quarter of 2015 first-time buyers in Northern Ireland took out 1,400 loans to buy a home, valued at £110m.
This represented a 13 per cent decrease in the number of loans from a year before, and an 8 per cent drop in the amount borrowed.
Last year broker Mortgage Advice Bureau extended its coverage into Northern Ireland.