Mystery Shopper  

Mystery Shopper: Leicester

Knowledge: If they bought into a new property under the government’s Help to Buy scheme, they would need 25 per cent for the deposit, the loan would be interest-free for five years and they would not pay stamp duty. He suggested a Help to Buy Isa was a long-term solution and might not be necessary, while shared ownership was designed for smaller deposits. 5/5


Email: danny.sohal@mab 5/5

Verdict: The mortgage adviser was friendly and very knowledgeable, gave a good description of the options available, and was willing to give further details without much prompting.


Adviser: GP3 Financial Solutions (independent)

Address: 50 Rosemead Drive, Oadby, Leicester, Leicestershire, LE2 5SF

Speed: At 10:45am the shopper was transferred quickly to a wealth manager. 5/5

Telephone manner: Polite and professional. 5/5

Qualifications: Associate of the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment with a level 4 investment advice diploma. 4/5

Payment method: Free initial consultation, while fees depend on the product. No other charges on top. In terms of Isas and pension investments, they would charge an initial percentage fee on the investment amount, typically at 3 per cent. 4/5

Guidance: More information would be gathered in the initial meeting, where they would discuss income expenses, savings, investments and longer-term plans such as pensions. Although his business does not handle mortgages specifically, the wealth manager offered to help the couple gain a better understanding of their finances and chances of getting on the property ladder. 4/5

Knowledge: If they were saving to buy their first home, they could save into a Help to Buy Isa and the government would boost their savings by 25 per cent, but the maximum amount you can save is £12,000, meaning they would only get a top-up of £3,000 from the government. Whatever they decided to do, he could help them make a well-informed decision. 4/5


Email: 5/5

Verdict: The wealth manager was friendly and knowledgeable about estate planning and the importance of getting on the property ladder and covered some of the main options available to first-time buyers, but he could not give advice on the mortgage process itself.


Adviser: Meridian Mortgages (appointed representative)

Address: 68 Pullman Rd, Leicester, Wigston LE18 2DB

Speed: Asked to leave a number and an adviser called back within the hour. 3/5

Telephone manner: Friendly and professional. 5/5

Qualifications: CeMAP. 5/5

Payment method: After a free initial conversation, the shopper would only pay the fee for an accepted mortgage application, roughly between £300 to £500. 5/5

Guidance: An initial conversation would take about half an hour and could be conducted over the phone where they could discuss some of the government schemes available to first-time buyers in more detail. He would suggest the house prices they should be looking at. Once they found a property, he would be able to help with the mortgage process. 5/5