Brightstar teams up to offer later life referrals

Brightstar teams up to offer later life referrals

Brightstar Financial has partnered with Sentry Lifetime to offer a later-life lending referral service for brokers.

The partnership will allow brokers to offer equity release solutions through Sentry Lifetime’s mortgage advisers, who are also members of the Equity Release Council.

Brightstar is a specialist finance partner to intermediaries which aims to help brokers with cases declined by mainstream lenders.

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Brokers can contact Brightstar with a client referral and earn a share of the proc fee upon completion.

Rob Jupp, chief executive at Brightstar Financial, said demographics dictated that later life lending was one of the biggest areas of opportunity for brokers.

He said: "It is a specialist area and equity release has its own qualifications and separate permissions - by launching our later life lending service, we are enabling brokers to diversify their offering whilst maintaining focus on their core areas of business."

The over-55s own 63 per cent of the property wealth, worth £2.5trn. One in three mortgages taken out by people age under 55 will run beyond state pension age.

The amount of mortgage debt held by over-55s households increased by 45 per cent from the 2006 to 2008 period to 2012 to 2014, to stand at £160bn.

Thomas Webster, managing partner at Sentry Advice Limited, said lifetime mortgages are the most popular form of equity release as they enabled the borrower to retain ownership of the property.

He said: "It is an area of growing demand and our partnership with Brightstar means that brokers can access the opportunity even if they don’t have experience or expertise in this area.

"We will do the hard work and own the advice, but brokers can maintain ownership of the client and take a share of the proc fee."

Daniel White, managing director at White Financial Services, said the more products suited to all different types of clients, the better the industry becomes and the better the client outcome - but innovation is missing in areas such as later life lending.

Mr White said that while referral services such as this were a great addition to some, he said products like this needed to be accessible directly to brokers. 

He said: "What concerns me is a regulated firm having to use a third party to access a product that could be accessible via an introducer agreement direct with the lender, should the advisor not be qualified to advise in that area. 

"By using a third party, the advisor is dictated to in terms of fees to access the product which would easily be cut out by direct access.

"In addition, if a product becomes limited via certain channels, it becomes a lot more valuable to those who have access which could then in turn increase the value of accessing that product to brokers."