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Mortgage network sees application pipeline boom

Mortgage network sees application pipeline boom

Primis Mortgage Network has reported a year-on-year increase in the number of applications to join the network during lockdown.

The number of applications it received between April and June had increased by 30 per cent, compared to the same period last year. 

It has appointed 134 new advisers and 28 new appointed representative firms, and has 300 applicants hoping to join the network.

Speaking to FTAdviser last month, Toni Smith, chief operating officer at Primis Mortgage Network said that Primis had a pipeline of 268 brokers waiting to join.

Ms Smith said: “[In] all my years in the financial services… I’ve never known a pipeline that large of brokers wanting to join a network”.

She added that the figure suggested the coronavirus hadn’t deterred brokers from moving networks.

While Ms Smith said the pandemic had contributed to the number of brokers waiting to join Primis, she added that the pipeline was “always strong” and “never less than 150”.

The network also reported a 40 per cent increase in the average number of advisers that attended its virtual training sessions since April, compared to before the pandemic.

Ms Smith said: “It has also been hugely encouraging to see even more of our advisers engaging with training and development sessions now that these have moved online. This will be something we look to continue with post-crisis, to make sure that all of our AR firms can access the relevant support wherever they are in the UK, effectively and efficiently.”

Additionally, Primis said its product desk had received 7,643 queries from brokers between April and June, providing assistance with queries on mortgages, protection, general insurance and digital systems.

The network said the number of queries marked a 42 per cent increase on the average number typically received by the desk from advisers in any given three-month period during ‘normal’ market conditions.

This comes after Ms Smith told FTAdviser last month that the network’s mortgage volumes were “rocketing” since the easing of lockdown.

The property market was effectively closed for seven weeks during lockdown until May 13, when the government published guidance whereby anyone in England could move home again.

Ms Smith said that although mortgage volumes in April and May were slightly down on last year, the month of June was projected to be “way in excess” of June last year.

In addition, Ms Smith said that while protection can be a “difficult sell for advisers”, she could not “remember a time” during her 32 years in the industry when customers asked brokers to sell them income protection and critical illness cover.

chloe.cheung@ft.com