NatWest Intermediary Solutions will begin instructing all valuations for residential and buy-to-let purchase and remortgage applications, up to £500,000, from when an application is submitted.
From Monday (7 March) Natwest will instruct valuations once it receives an application in a bid to enable the underwriting and valuation processes to run concurrently, thus reducing the time a customer has to wait for an offer.
The offer will be issued once both processes have been completed successfully.
Sarah Taylor, service development manager at NatWest Intermediary Solutions, said it is anticipated this change will result in most offers being made three working days sooner than they are currently.
Any applications submitted ahead of Monday will have the valuations instructed in line with the current process.
NatWest Intermediary Solutions has been running a pilot scheme with a sample of brokers, over the last three months, to test and refine the new process and is now ready to roll this out to all mortgage intermediaries.
There will be no material change to the application process for brokers.
They will continue to receive an email with their customer’s mortgage reference number once they have submitted the application.
Once the application has been submitted successfully, the valuation will be instructed and the fee for the valuation on purchase mortgages will be debited from the customer’s payment card within 24 hours.
Brokers will be able to monitor the progress of each customer’s application using the recently launched online Mortgage Application Tracker tool that sits on the NatWest Intermediary Solutions website.
Ms Taylor said: “The introduction of the earlier valuation instruction will make a real difference to the time it takes to send a customer an offer.
“This is, of course, dependent on brokers sending in the correct supporting documentation to enable our underwriters to fully assess the application.
“We will provide customers with a full refund if their applications are declined on the grounds of affordability or credit scoring or where we cannot lend the full amount requested due to affordability issues.”