Brokers’ overall satisfaction with mortgage lenders fell to a record low in October, with many saying they were “fed up” with the pandemic being used as an “excuse” for poor service or delays.
A survey of 490 brokers by Smart Money People found overall satisfaction with lenders was at 77.8 per cent, a drop of 4.9 per cent since H1 2020 and the lowest score reported since tracking began in H2 2018.
According to Smart Money People, the drop was seen across all sectors except for specialist lenders, which “remained consistent” with H1 2020.
Jacqueline Dewey, CEO of Smart Money People, said: “The latest edition of our Mortgage Lender Benchmark shows that brokers are becoming dissatisfied with lender performance in reaction to Covid-19. Many are fed up with the pandemic being used as an excuse for poor service or slow processes.”
But Ms Dewey added: “Despite the difficulties faced in the market this year, some lenders have continued to outshine their competition. A third of all lenders in our report have seen an increase in their overall rating.
“We found lenders who performed well in comparison with H1 2020 were particularly strong around customer service. Lenders whose overall rating fell often did well around product range and rates, but very poorly for speed.”
Indeed, speed to process an application was found to have the biggest impact on a broker’s likelihood to recommend a lender.
According to Smart Money People, brokers’ rating for speed saw the biggest fall, from 75.8 per cent to 67.2 per cent, highlighting their “annoyance”.
One broker commented: “Currently 23 working days to complete initial assessment of an application. No response from the BDM to my emails. Hold wait for processing centre is over an hour.”
According to data from Trussle, the average time from mortgage submission to approval increased by 50 per cent year-on-year in October, from 16 days to 24 days.
The online mortgage broker has warned potential property buyers to budget for stamp duty in the event they miss the March 31 deadline for the tax holiday.
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