FCA reaches out to mortgage advisers

FCA reaches out to mortgage advisers

The Financial Conduct Authority will tour the country in a series of roundtables this year to talk with advisers about the mortgage intermediary and lending market. 

The regulator has arranged a roadshow of six dates across the UK at which regulated mortgage intermediaries and lenders can question the FCA on an agenda "determined by the attendees". 

The FCA will have 90 minutes to answer any regulatory questions companies operating in the mortgage market may have, with the sessions running until March 2020. 

The regulator will first visit Glasgow on October 29, followed by Newcastle on November 14, Birmingham on December 3, London on January 23, Manchester on February 4, and Newport on March 10. 

Much of the regulator's focus on the mortgage market this year has been on finding a solution for so-called mortgage prisoners, a cause which has gained momentum from trade bodies and MPs. 

Mortgage prisoners are predominantly borrowers who took out a mortgage before the financial crisis but are now blocked from switching to better rates due to changes in lending practices.

Many are told they "cannot afford" a new deal despite the monthly payments being cheaper than their current mortgage policy.

The FCA published proposals in March in a bid to help mortgage prisoners which would see lenders no longer have to abide by certain affordability rules, such as to verify the consumer’s income.

But lenders would not be able to enter into a new regulated mortgage contract unless the borrower can demonstrate that the new mortgage is more affordable than their present one.

Andrew Bailey, chief executive of the FCA, has previously said he hoped the changes would be in force by the end of the year but admitted this was "at the mercy of Brexit" - a delay for which the regulator has faced industry criticism. 

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