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Meeting Consumer Duty Obligations

Consumer Duty: Principle 12

Looking Ahead At The BTL Market In 2023

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Income Protection now available

Income Protection will sit alongside Guardian’s existing life, critical illness, combined life and children’s critical illness covers.

Advisers will be able to combine different cover types, amounts and terms to create bespoke, needs-based protection recommendations for clients.

Guardian’s new Income Protection has been created in collaboration with advisers, with Guardian taking on board their feedback to address some key concerns.

With the launch of Income Protection, Guardian’s full menu is now available on Protection Builder 2.0. You can combine up to 10 covers for each person to build the ultimate protection policy for every client. Discover more here.

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The Exeter

2022 income protection claims statistics revealed

When it comes to paying claims, we believe it’s what’s behind the numbers that really counts. Every figure tells a story, and this year we’ve taken a slightly different approach to sharing our statistics with you.

Visit our website to hear from experts around our business, shedding light on some of the data and bringing to life what a pay-out can mean to us, and our members.

Discover how income protection helped members like David, a Security Guard, who suffered a debilitating stroke at 42. Or Jennie, a Sales Executive, who at 33 found herself unable to work due to her mental health. We’re proud to have supported David, Jennie, and 1,227 other members last year.

Click here to reveal more.

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Gatehouse Bank

Changes to Country Checklist

We have recently reviewed and updated our Country Checklist which details the residents of countries from which we will not consider finance applications. The key changes are as follows:

  • We have added five countries to the list that are no longer acceptable which are Nigeria, the British Virgin Islands, Costa Rica, Eritrea and the Marshall Islands.
  • The list of countries now classed as High-Risk Jurisdictions has also been expanded, as referred to in our updated criteria guides where enhanced due diligence may be required.

Click to view our updated Home Finance Applications – Country Checklist.

If you have any queries or require further information our team remains available via phone and email, details of which can be found here.

Legal & General

Just Covered Podcast | Ep 6 just landed!

Listen now to our newest episode of Just Covered –  ‘Advice: it’s all about confidence in your product’?

Our hosts sit down with the co-founders of Bates Wilcox, Natalie and Charlotte. They came together to establish Bates Wilcox in 2019 just before the pandemic and in this episode we hear how they have taken the New Build mortgage world by storm.

Charlotte and Natalie share with us their clear passion for creating a sustainable work life balance for both themselves as business owners and their team whilst maintaining an exemplar level of service to their clients and stakeholders within the New Home world.

In this episode we cover:

  • Why both belief in yourself and your product are everything
  • How to create a sense of balance when it comes to managing client expectations and giving yourself time for your lifestyle
  • Medical underwriting up front – yes really!
  • Using disclaimers and their importance within the advice process

Listen now

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Share your story and enter the Vulnerable Customer Awards

When it comes to supporting clients in vulnerable circumstances in achieving their desired financial outcomes, have you got a story that showcases how good consumer outcomes are embedded in the culture of your firm?

Enter the Just Group Vulnerable Customer Awards today

Now into their third year, these unique and very topical Vulnerable Customer Awards are the UK’s only ones to recognise the outstanding efforts our financial services industry goes to to support their clients in vulnerable circumstances.

This year, more than ever, firms are under scrutiny to prove to the regulator that good consumer outcomes are embedded in the culture of the firm. These awards are the ideal opportunity to reflect, analyse and evaluate the processes, policies and practical steps that you and your firm have in place to support your vulnerable clients in achieving their desired financial outcomes.

Could you be a winner? Simply tell us your story in 800 words max and the judges will decide.

Zephyr Homeloans

Let’s talk about Top Slicing

This week Zephyr’s new ‘Let’s Talk’ video focuses on top slicing – a useful feature for BTL affordability. Their friendly RSM, Andy Rowe, gives you a useful overview of how top slicing (and Zephyr, of course) could help your landlord clients afford their BTL mortgage when the rent is not enough by itself.

Zephyr will release a new video each week, so check their website often to watch them here, or sign-up to their email newsletter here to be kept up to date.

Leeds Building Society

Setting homeowners up for success with pioneering Experian partnership

Aspiring homeowners might be able to ‘boost’ their credit score and improve their chances of getting a mortgage with Leeds Building Society following a new partnership with Experian.

The Society is the first UK mortgage provider to partner with Experian and connect to its free Experian Boost service. This uses open banking to assess regular debit payments, council tax and things like Netflix or Spotify subscriptions, which aren’t usually considered in credit checks.

By allowing your clients to provide further proof that they have a track record of keeping up to regular payments, Leeds Building Society hopes to make home ownership a reality for even more people. It’s estimated that 7.5% of consumers – the equivalent of 25,000 of the 370,000 first time buyers in the UK last year – would see an improvement in their credit score by using Experian Boost.

To find out more, and hear from Leeds Building Society’s CEO Richard Fearon on this pioneering partnership, click here. 

Leeds Building Society

The Mortgage Lender

Our faster, easier, more efficient portal is LIVE

Over the past few months, we’ve been working to upgrade our broker portal to deliver a better experience for you and your clients. Today’s the day – we’re proud to announce our improved portal is LIVE.

A Better, Faster Process

To make processing faster, you now need to provide all the relevant documents before your application goes to an underwriter. When you key in an application, you’ll get a checklist of what you need to upload. Once the documents have been uploaded, you’ll have direct access to the underwriter who’s working on your case.

For a simple guide on how to provide documentation within the portal watch our video.


Opens one of UK’s most sustainable offices in Swindon

Zurich celebrated the official opening of its state-of-the-art Swindon office, Unity Place at an event last month for staff and local VIPs including Justin Tomlinson MP and Sir Robert Buckland MP.

The building has been designed to rank among the top 10% of commercial buildings for sustainability in the UK. It features electric car charging points, a storage and repair centre for bicycles, improved recycling points, energy efficient LED lighting and a beehive on the roof. It will be powered completely by renewable electricity.

Other special guests at the event include pupils from Ferndale and Lethbridge Primary Schools and Nyland School. Budding young artists from each school entered a competition to produce a piece of art that depicts what sustainability means to them. The winning entry will take pride of place in the new building’s café which is open to Zurich employees and staff guests.

Local charities supported by Zurich Community Trust (ZCT) were also welcomed, including Big Breakfast Plus, The Harbour Project, Mind Swindon and Gloucester, Swindon Carers Centre, The Recovery Tree, and Swindon Women’s Aid. ZCT celebrates its 50th anniversary of working in Swindon this year and recently announced donations of over £360,000 to its local partners and a total national donation of £3m.

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Pure Retirement

Enhance your expertise in equity release

Enhance your expertise in equity release underwriting and optimise lifetime mortgage efficiency by deepening your understanding of legal and property condition risks.

In collaboration with Advise Wise, Pure Retirement presents a webinar series starting on 18th May, exclusively tailored for lifetime mortgage financial advisers. Join us and gain valuable insights from Jake Wilson, Pure Retirement’s Underwriting Team Manager.

Gain a comprehensive understanding of lifetime mortgage underwriting considerations from our experts and secure the best outcomes for your clients, ensuring their future financial well-being.

This is a two-part series, Part 1- which focuses on “Legal risks and underwriting”, and Part 2, on 28th June, will expand your knowledge on “Property condition risks”.

Learn more and register your place for 18th May by using this link.