Fintech lender Habito to cut broker team by more than a dozen

“What we don't believe is that it makes sense for us to have humans collating paperwork, going through sourcing systems, picking mortgages, and trying to memorise or find eligibility and affordability criteria,” Hegarty explained at the time. “Machines don’t have bad days and never forget.”

In April, Bloomberg reported Habito was exploring a potential merger of its mortgage broker division with L&C Mortgages but deal talks reportedly ended last week. L&C declined to comment while Habito has not responded to a request for it to do so.

Article continues after advert

Habito also operates in the lending and conveyancing spaces.

The company moved into lending two years ago, beginning with buy-to-let - another distinction from other digital brokers which haven’t focused on growing their lending arms.

In March 2021, the company launched ‘Habito One’, which claimed to be the first fixed-for-life mortgage in the UK, with no early repayment charges.

As well as being an FCA-authorised lender since 2018, Habito is also a qualified conveyancing firm, employing a handful of in-house lawyers. 

The startup is currently loss making. In 2020, Habito raised £35mn from a series of backers, including venture capital investors Ribbit Capital and Japanese financial services company SBI Group.

A fair bit of the £35mn raised last year has gone towards advertising, including TV adverts and digital campaigns, as well as towards technology.