Monday, 16 October 2017

'All Monies Charges': A Threat to Law Firms

Image result for grabbing all monies


The recent news that the majority of the top ten lenders have declared they will use ‘all monies charges’ to repossess homes if borrowers struggle with non-mortgage debts should be cause for concern to conveyancing practitioners.


File Reviews for Handbook Compliance


More repossessions equals increased file reviews and inevitably the spotlight being placed on the lender handbook compliance.

John Kunzler, senior vice president in the financial and professional practice at Marsh recently pointed out in an article entitled ‘Grasping the nettle of conveyancing claims’:


‘...when the property market falls solicitors are often held to account for negligently performing conveyancing and, more recently, in particular failing to follow the instructions set out in the Council of Mortgage Lenders’ (CML) Handbook. For those who have worked in professional indemnity for decades, it may feel like solicitors are perpetually doomed to repeat this cycle’


A review of Marsh statistics on lender claims in England and Wales from 2011 to 2014 showed that around 40 per cent of the cost of conveyancing claims arises from breaching various disclosure obligations set out in the CML Handbook requirements. And this was a period when repossessions were low. Undoubtedly lenders choose the breaches that are easiest to prove, and support the lenders’ position that they would not have proceeded with the loan had they known the information that was not provided by the law firm.


Reports on Title


A further consequence of a lender repossessing a home for a non-mortgage debt is the inevitable questioning as to  whether a firm's Report on Title adequately explained the implications of an all monies charge. Although we are approaching Halloween I do not wish to take on the role of the Profit of Doom. Yet it's foresee the potential nightmare of a client looking to blame a lawyer if they have nothing in writing adequately explaining the meaning of such a charge.


Lexsure are running a specific webinar next month on the the topic of what to include in your Report on Title with an emphasis on the mortgage section of the Report. Bookings can be made here.

Sunday, 1 October 2017

Lenders Who Made Changes to Their Handbook in September 2017

A number of lenders made changes to their Handbook last month. Perhaps not surprisingly some focused on changes to leasehold requirements.

Examples of lenders who made changes (England and Wales region) include:

Yorkshire Building Society (2 sections)

Scottish Widows Bank (5 sections)

Swansea Building Society (1 section)

Chelsea Building Society (2 sections)

Market Harborough Building made set an interesting new requirement relating to ground rents. Their new wording at 5.14.9 reads:

a. Any ground rent at the start of the mortgage term should not exceed annually £250 outside of London or a £1,000 inside London. If this is the case you must immediately contact the Society. We will advise you if our mortgage offer remains valid.
b. Ground rent and other event fees must be reasonable at all times during the lease term. For example, it is acceptable for ground rent escalation to be linked to RPI (Retail Price Index) or a similar index and where this is the case we do not need to be advised. However, unreasonable multipliers of ground rent will not be permitted, for example, doubling every 5, 10 or 15 years. These must be referred to the Society and we will advise you if our mortgage offer remains valid. If you are unsure as to whether the terms of a lease are unreasonable, please refer the details to the Society immediately.

Friday, 18 August 2017

Leasehold is Changing - Is this Reflected in your Report on Title?

Leasehold reform is on the way. Many lenders have already been proactive in making changes for some months now to their P2 Handbook requirements.

Is it now time to be making changes to your Report on Title in light of new lender instructions and in anticipation of legislative reform?

On the 25th and 26th September Lexsure will be running a number of free 30-minute webinars focused on what a firm's leasehold Report on Title might contain and how the latest e-ROT technologies can improve the process of generating a Report on Title.

The free webinar will pay particular attention on the following areas:

  • New considerations concerning the number of years of the lease
  • Fees changed for by a management company or landlord
  • Ground Rent provisions
  • Assignment provisions - what might affect marketability
Bookings can be made here

Sunday, 23 July 2017

No Smiles for Conveyancers if Cheshire is Right

Are we about to see a significant dip in house prices in London in the near future?

Bloomberg News recently asked seven market commentators to predict what they see happening next in London’s 1.6 trillion-pound housing market.

Paul Cheshire, professor of economic geography at The London School of Economics and Political Science:

“The turning point is just being reached. Housing prices have continued to rise relative to incomes and the affordability ratio is now at an all-time low. Real incomes are falling as the weakness in the pound feeds through to higher inflation. The ability to raise wages isn’t there and Brexit is making everything more uncertain and worse. London is the epicenter of the U.K. housing market and changes in prices there tend to ripple out. I’m expecting a sharp correction in housing, more on the level of the 1990 crash. I don’t expect negative equity to be as big of a problem as it was then, and interest rates may rise but will still remain low by the standards of the early 1990s.”

NOTE: House prices fell about 32% in London from 1989 through 1992, according to data compiled by Nationwide Building Society.

Friday, 30 June 2017

CML Lenders’ Handbook to be Renamed on 1st July

From 1 July 2017, the finance and banking industry operating in the UK will be represented by a new trade association, UK Finance.

It will represent around 300 firms in the UK providing credit, banking, markets and payment-related services.

The new organisation will take on activities previously carried out by the Asset Based Finance Association, the British Bankers’ Association, the Council of Mortgage Lenders, Financial Fraud Action UK, Payments UK and the UK Cards Association.

The CML Lenders’ Handbook will continue, but it will be renamed the "UK Finance Mortgage Lenders’ Handbook" (‘the Handbook’). 

The CML will rename the Handbook from 1 July 2017.

Associated documents (for example, the Disclosure of Incentives Form) on the CML website in due course.

Website urls and bookmarked links relating to the Handbook will continue to work as normal.

From 1 July, all references to the CML Lenders’ Handbook shall be deemed to mean the UK Finance Mortgage Lenders’ Handbook.

Any associated documents which refer to the CML shall be deemed to mean UK Finance.

A set of FAQs and responses has been prepared by the CML to assist users of the Handbook during the transition from the Council of Mortgage Lenders to UK Finance.

Monday, 19 June 2017

Is Your Firm Updating Their Pre-Completion Checklist ?

Technology, lender compliance and fraud prevention within the context of a pre-competition checklist are some of the main focus points at the next Webinar by Lexsure on 24th and 25th July.  

Almost all firms have a pre-completion checklist that they use, either on the side of the file or a paper checklist. But how often does a firm update that checklist and how comprehensive? Lexusre’s webinar focuses on what a firm’s pre-completion checklist should look like and how the latest technologies can help reduce mistakes and insurance premiums.

The free webinar will pay particular attention on the following areas:

  • What questions should your checklist have to highlight potential frauds (what can we learn from the Mishcon, Perunsing and P&P cases)
  • Help to Buy - Example Questions/Tasks/Workflows
  • The European Union’s Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive
  • Lender Compliance - How can a checklist ensure that you are up to date with the latest requirements
  • How a pre-completion checklist  can build your post completion workflow.


The webinar will demonstrate example checklists within the COMPLELTIONmonitor system

Bookings to the webinar are available here but please as will previous webinars only 800 spaces are available.

Monday, 29 May 2017

Amendments To CML Lenders’ Handbook - 19 June 2017

The following amendments will be made to the Lenders Handbook for England and Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland on 19 June 2017:

England and Wales

  • A minor amendment to reflect that the FASI and MASI professional qualifications are no longer offered.

Scotland

  • Updating the Handbook to reflect the closure of the Register of Sasines to new standard securities
  • Removing reference to obsolete Law Society guidance in relation to coal mining
  • Aligning the Handbook instruction with England and Wales in respect of warranties for new build properties
  • Updating the handbook to reflect the use of digital discharges
  • A minor amendment to reflect that the FASI and MASI professional qualifications are no longer offered.

Northern Ireland

  • A minor amendment to reflect that the FASI and MASI professional qualifications are no longer offered.
  • Aligning the Handbook instruction with England and Wales in respect of warranties for new build properties

The CML will for an updated summary of amendments will be published alongside the changes, as usual.



How Can Conveyancers Avoid a "Kodak Moment"

A director of VC company recently advised me that ‘there are only two types of industry left..those that have been disrupted and those that are ripe for disruption’.  

The legal industry will, sooner or later, witness significant change regardless of how loud the naysayers are. Concluding that because disruption hasn’t happened yet, that it will never happen is a high risk approach.

Simply repeating the statement “It won’t happen to us” again and again did not prevent disruption to newspaper publishers, telephone utilities, stockbrokers, record companies, bookstores, travel agencies and the retailers.

The reason Kodak failed, was not due a lack of corporate strategy (the top brass saw digitisation coming), and nothing to do with poor technology (in 1975 Kodak built one of the first digital cameras and held more patents than it’s competitors). Kodak failed because it was a chemical company and a bureaucracy, filled with people eager to do what they did yesterday.

Like Kodak many of the owners of law firms that I talk to recognise that change will happen but want to hold on to existing processes for as long as possible.

It would be wrong to assume that law firm managers  don't care about doing things better. But overseeing and paying for change for the benefit of the next generation of lawyers  isn't what they signed up for.

Law firms must make sure they are not falling into the same trap as Kodak. There are a number of potentially disruptive developments occurring at present which may have similar effects on firms as digital photography had on Kodak. Rocket Lawyer and other online legal services are just a couple of examples. Since most owners of firms are lacking experience of how to detect and manage disruption they will have to be especially vigilant and prepared to go through one or two false alarms on their way to developing relevant experience.



Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Will Poor Conveyancing Quality be Exposed?

If you are not going to be a good conveyancer then you better be a lucky one and hope that events don't conspire to expose errors. I don't fancy your odds in the long term though if you continue to make mistakes.  

Conveyancing errors often are allowed to happen for one of two reasons:

You're in a huge hurry and you can't process all the incoming information properly. But more common...

Our heads our turned in order to focus on short term thinking. The ‘lifting of the carpet’ may happen for months or years and possibly never. You would be amazed to learn how many lawyers tell me ‘I have not been sued in 20 years of practice and therefore clearly I do not make mistakes’.

Similar thinking is the reason why most of us don't save for retirement, don't pay attention to long-term environmental issues, continue to smoke and, tragically, tolerate (or fall prey to) irrational rants about things like vaccines.

Poor decisions and errors happen not only due to lack of knowledge. Often poor decisions happen because a firm can be swayed by short-term comfort and ignore long-term implications. A good example of this is when I was told by one conveyancing firm that they do not do environmental searches (even where their lender client requires it) because the costs made their conveyancing quotes less attractive than their competitors. A bad decision feels good in the short run, easy for someone to justify when the decision is driven by apparent immediate economic pressures. But there's a gap when we get to the long run. In my recent webinar ‘The Future of Legal Technology’ I talk about the concept of ‘Nowism’ as a blocker on innovation and risk management.

The job of the managing partner, HOLPs and COLPs is to elevate the long term risk management of the conveyancing process regardless how hard the marketing and tribal noise around us encourages to fall prey to instant comfort of pushing through transactions at volume and speed.

The future will ultimately ignore short term requirements.


HSBC Stops Lending on Leaseholds with Onerous Ground Rents

HSBC have become the latest lender to change their CML Handbook instructions to lawyers in relation to ground rents.

Section 5.14.9 of HSBCs CML Handbook Part 2 now reads

We will not provide residential or Buy to Let Mortgages in the following circumstances:

• The property is subject to an onerous Lease clause regarding an excessive or unreasonably escalating ground rent.

This change comes hot on the heels of the Nationwide Building Society change on the 11th May. Despite some mainstream and industry press pointing to the fact that Nationwide were the first lender to make such a change, this is not the case. A number of lenders were making changes introducing new requirements in relation to ground rent five weeks earlier.

Other Part 2 sections of CML Handbook for HSBC were also changed yesterday. Law firms wanting to be updated when lenders change their instructions can sign up to the LENDERmonitor Alert Service.  


Friday, 19 May 2017

The Conveyancing Checklist - The Sharpest Tool in the Box



One reason not to use the latest legal technologies reducing conveyancing risk is that it potentially lulls the lawyer into a false sense of security. Lexsure’s intelligent checklist system COMPLETIONmonitor is sometimes met by such an objection.


The phenomenon known as ‘inattentional blindness’ is real. This is when you ask people to look for something specific and they develop a startling inability to see things in general — even things that would normally be glaringly obvious.


In one rather amazing experiment on ‘inattentional blindness‘ subjects are shown a video of a fast-paced ball game and asked to count how many times the ball is passed back and forth. Partway through the video, a person in a gorilla costume wanders into the middle of the screen, beats its chest a few times, and then wanders off again. Here’s the amazing part: between 33 and 50% of subjects don’t notice this happen. Perhaps this bears repeating: up to half the people instructed to pay close attention to a video fail to notice a six-foot-tall, chest-pounding gorilla in the middle of it.


Here’s a thought experiment: You have a hundred property lawyers dealing with an identical leasehold purchase. Suppose you give half those teams a checklist. Now suppose the test paperwork includes a complication that isn’t on the list. Which half is going to do better at noticing the problem? I’d bet it’s the group without the checklist.


So, have we proved that checklists are a bad idea? That doesn't seem to stack up with the evidence; there's significant proof that checklists work, to the extent that certain insurers are prepared to bet on it, and offer reduced PI for firms that use software such as COMPLETIONmonitor.


In that case, how is it that Lexsure have bridged the gap between risk of omission and inattentional blindness? Simple. they have 10 years of group discussions behind their technology, allowing a flexible and truly comprehensive  checklist to evolve, with detailed input from hundreds of expert conveyancers working on many weird and wonderful cases.


The function of the conveyancing risk mitigation checklist is as much psychological as practical. It is a first step toward accepting our fallibility in word of increased conveyancing risk — a kind of gateway drug to humility. With its lagging standards, conveyancing urgently needs checklists.


Simply dismissing the value of a checklist  is like saying ‘I would rather use a blunt knife than a sharp knife because I can cut myself’. In reality, cooks know that a sharp knife is less likely to cause injury, because it goes where you point it. It does what you tell it to do, which means you can focus on what you want the outcome to be.


The challenge of a sharp knife is that it puts ever more responsibility on the person who uses it. It will do what you tell it do, so tell it well.


You can opt not to use the sharpest checklist technologies but you may find that your existing processes are akin to a blunt instrument that in the long run could be a lot more dangerous.

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

Conveyancing: Sorting by Price

Sorting by price is the dominant way conveyancing online now happens with most consumers picking the lowest advertised price.
If you think I am wrong, ask those firms who are the most expensive on comparison sites how much business they win compared to those publishing lowest fees. Just like cheapest airline ticket or cheapest insurance or freelancer the lowers price comes up first, and most people click.
This is ideal for the comparison sites as it’s simple to build. The price is a number, and it's easy to sort.
It suits the lazy conveyancing firm and it’s great for the naive consumer. If a potential client can't take the time to learn about the options, about quality, about side effects, then it seems like buying the cheapest is the way to go--surely all conveyancing lawyers offer the same service anyway?
For the law firm nothing is easier to improve than price. Low price conveyancing is the domain of the conveyancing firm who doesn't have anything more meaningful to offer. It takes no nuance, it’s a short term win with no long-term advantage, no concern about the big picture or long term health of the firm. Simply become more brutal, demand more from your lawyers and cut every corner you can. And then blame the system.
Yet most of us understand that it makes no sense to hire someone merely because they are the cheapest. After-all how many of us would pick a book or a movie or a restaurant simply because it costs the least.

Ask yourself this question:  how often is the cheapest choice the best choice?

Saturday, 13 May 2017

Ransomware: Lessons for Conveyancers

The recent cyber attack on the NHS is a stark warning to a conveyancing industry targeted and vulnerable to cyber crime.


Imagine the scenario..It’s 7 p.m. on a Friday. You are about to finish a report on title due the next day when a message pops up on your laptop. It informs you that a third party has gained control of your system and encrypted all your files. To unencrypt your files, you must pay a ransom.


All your files on your computer system are now unreadable. Thanks to this ransomware attack, your firm has basically been shut down while your system is held hostage. Have you completions been compromised? Did clients expecting their balances receive them? How is everyone in the firm going to to work on Monday? Did you open a file that you should not have. A hundred questions and scenarios are going through your mind.


The most common ways for the software to be installed on a law firm’s systems is through phishing emails, malicious adverts on websites, and questionable apps and programs. After the ransomware is downloaded, generally only a unique “key” can decrypt the firm’s files.


Ransom amounts differ, but the price — depending on the hacker behind the scheme — is usually about £500. Larger firms may face significantly higher ransoms. The hackers normally demand payment in bitcoins, a digital form of currency that is difficult to track.


Lawyers should always exercise caution when opening unsolicited emails or visiting websites they are unfamiliar with. Never download an app that hasn't been verified by an official store, and read reviews before installing programs. Most ransomware programs are extremely difficult to combat. Nevertheless, there are certain steps one can take to work around a virus, rather than simply acceding to the hackers demands.


One way is to recover files. Lexsure has been offering conveyancing firms backup solutions as one of its suite of risk management tools since 2010. The easiest way to fix a virus is to clean it off the infected properties and restore the information from backup systems. That is why you should frequently back up your files and use a service that provides redundant backup facilities. There are of course regulatory compliance requirements in relation to protecting and backing up client data.


When a firm has the option of paying hackers a lot of money or losing a couple of minutes of work and restoring from files that have been backed up, the choice becomes obvious. If you are not completely satisfied with your backup system and provider, now is a good time to conduct a review and make any necessary changes.


This is also a good time for conveyancing firms to considering the use file-accessing auditing to open their files. This functionality, which is built into Microsoft Windows and available through most secure, cloud-based solutions, tracks each time a user opens a file or folder. By monitoring the logging activity, the firm’s IT professionals can identify patterns or instances of unauthorized access. Through file-accessing auditing, you can launch a course of action such as stopping the server or removing file share creating the opportunity to halt the attack.


Conveyancing firms law firms have been hearing for years that they could be the victims of a cyberattack, the danger has never been clearer.

The SRA report on Information Security includes the latest information on what law firms can do to keep cyber-secure. We have also published tailored information for small firms, a guide to common scams, up to date scam alerts, and case studies.

Thursday, 11 May 2017

Nationwide Building Society Sets Out New Ground Rent,Event Fees and Lease Length Policy

Following it’s announcement earlier this week to make changes to their lending requirements for new build properties the lender has now updated their CML Part 2 instructions.


Sections 5.14.1 and 5.14.9 now have the following paragraph added:


NEW BUILD PROPERTIES (includes office conversions but does not apply to Shared Ownership)
The following are not acceptable:
- The unexpired lease term on a new build flat is less than 125 years
- The unexpired lease term on a new build house is less than 250 years
- Starting ground rent is more than 0.1% of the property value
The lease must be amended to comply with the above. If not the case cannot proceed. Please advise us where the case cannot proceed.
Ground rents and event fees:
Ground rent and other event fees must be reasonable at all times during the lease term. For example, it is acceptable for ground rent escalation to be linked to RPI (Retail Price Index) or a similar index and where this is the case we do not need to be advised. However, unreasonable multipliers of ground rent will not be permitted, for example, doubling every 5, 10 or 15 years. These must be referred to us and we will advise if our mortgage offer remains valid. If you are unsure as to whether the terms of a lease are unreasonable, please refer the details to us.

To keep up to date with the latest changes subscribe to the LENDERmonitor Alert Service.

Wednesday, 10 May 2017

AmTrust Extends Rewards for Risk Management to Licenced Conveyancers

‘A’ rated insurance company AmTrust Europe Limited have extended their ground breaking agreement with legal software house Lexsure that links the use of risk mitigation software with lower expenditure on professional indemnity (PI) premiums for licensed conveyancers, a move that could be worth thousands of pounds for some conveyancing practices on the JLT/CLC Scheme.

Professional indemnity premiums are a great concern for licensed conveyancers, as they constitute one of the largest costs to the business aside from salaries.

Licensed conveyancers can now evidence their lower risk profile for conveyancing transactions by using Lexsure’s COMPLETIONmonitor software, an online checklist, tailor-made for conveyancers to reduce and eliminate errors and omissions.

Licensed conveyancing firms that reduce their risk profile by using COMPLETIONmonitor in the conveyancing process who insure with AmTrust can expect a per case savings on their PI renewals for each case completed with the software. Currently such a scheme is limited to 1-3 partner solicitor firms. Even for a small but active conveyancing practice, this could result in a savings of thousands of pounds. Alex Dyer, Head of Professional Indemnity at AmTrust Europe, said ‘We appreciate that the cost of PI insurance premiums has a great impact for licensed conveyancers. We believe it is right and fair to offer a financial reward to firms that empirically demonstrate risk mitigation by using COMPLETIONmonitor’. 


Note

AmTrust Europe Limited provides tailored insurance products and support services to partners, focusing on property, casualty, speciality risk, accident and health, legal and warranty insurance products.   

AmTrust Europe has been rated ‘A’ Excellent by A.M.Best.  The AmTrust Group is committed to disciplined underwriting focusing on niche products, low-hazard risks and serving the client’s needs.  

For further information regarding AmTrust Europe Limited please visit www.amtrustinternational.com.   All media enquiries please refer to Denise Johnson at denise.johnson@amtrustgroup.com  




Sunday, 7 May 2017

Conveyancers: Are you a Tortoise or Hare?

Conveyancing in recent years puts a premium on speed: the sooner, the faster, the better. You only have to look at most law tech companies in the conveyancing space to see claims of generating  ‘greater efficiency’ or claiming that their software ‘speeds up the process’.

I recently attended a managing partners seminar where one of the speakers all but said that if you wanted to be involved in volume conveyancing in any way you would only be profitable if you had systems in place to dramatically speed up the process and cope with bulk work. Pile it high, do it cheap and do it quick. How depressing.  

I agree with Malcom Gladwell, journalist and author, who during a recent interview at Wharton Business School said "In any kind of high-stakes job where the penalty for error is high, you can't afford to have hares,"

Insurers, lenders, regulators and law firms should fear the high output, lots-of-errors lawyer.  

My understanding from speaking to insurers and brokers is that most mistakes are not due to lack of legal knowledge but rather based on administrative matters or failing to follow a client’s interactions (CML Handbook instructions in particular). Such errors are often due to pressures of speed from not only the clients but often third parties such as agents or brokers.  I would even go one stage further and say that some of the most recent well publicised frauds might have been avoided if the lawyer concerned would have had the time to ‘join the dots’ or spot the various ‘indicators’ that existed.

I am not saying that lawyers should drag their heels on conveyancing transactions. Rather, I am suggesting that we redress the balance of speed and quality. If you have to compromise on one, in the long run you may be better off being a tortoise and getting it right.

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

CML Handbook - Staying on Top of Changes

All mainstream lenders provide their instructions to property lawyers via the CML Handbook or BSA mortgage instructions. Understanding a specific lender’s requirements and keeping up-to-date with changes can be a time-consuming manual process, particularly given that individual requirements can change on a daily basis.


In not addressing or overlooking a lender’s requirements, a solicitor or conveyancer risks being sued by the lender for the full value of the mortgage and their firm could be removed from the lender panel. The previous SRA thematic review into conveyancing revealed that a quarter of firms surveyed had experienced professional negligence claims relating to conveyancing work in the two years.


This free webinar focuses on the more important changes in the last 6 months. It will also highlight trends that are emerging when it comes to lender behaviour in particular in relation to certain types of ‘problematic properties’ for example: short leases, absentee landlords, defective leases etc.


The webinar is scheduled to last half an hour and will be split into four sections.


  • Key statistics and figures in relation to CML Handbook changes (for example most common section changed etc)
  • Significant CML Part 2 Changes in the last six months
  • Trends that are emerging - examples of how lenders react to new and emerging risk by adapting their Part 2 requirements
  • Demonstration of new Technologies are available to assist in CML Handbook compliance


For more information on dates and how to register, please click here.

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Reports on Title : How do You Find the Time?

Almost all conveyancing lawyers complain of not having enough hours in the day or being under significant time pressure. For many, there exists a feeling of being stretched or overworked.

Few would challenge the sentiment that conveyancing has become more complex in the last twenty years. Simultaneously, the industry has witnessed an increased demand for speed of transaction and better communication. Long gone are the days when there were four weeks in between exchange and completion, which believe it or not, was the norm in the mid 90’s.

With so many parties placing demands during the working day when is the conveyancing lawyer supposed to find the time - often in excess of an hour - to generate the single most important document in the purchase transaction, namely the Report on Title?

For many, the only option is to arrive at the office early or stay late or work over the weekend when the frequency of  phones or emails dies down. For others it’s booking one of the board-rooms to shut themselves off to concentrate on drafting such a crucial document.

Hardly surprising that a conveyancer can often be heard explaining to an agent or client ‘I have everything I need we just need to report to the client’. Whist that is said out loud, the internal voice is probably asking ‘how the hell am I going  to find the time to draft this report?’

Recent seminars and webinars by Lexsure have focused on ways to improve the workflow for generating a report on title not just from a speed perspective - reducing the process to a matter of  minutes - but also highlighting ways of improving risk management.

The April webinars are fully booked with 600 registrants but personal on-line demonstrations of the new e-ROT technology are now being offered. Firms can book a demo here.

Friday, 31 March 2017

Will your Borrower Client's Lease Term Accord with CML Handbook Requirements?

Accord Buy to Let is the latest of a number of lenders who have changed their CML Handbook requirement relating to minimum unexpired lease terms (section 5.14.1).

The new requirement reads :

"85 years from the date of completion of the mortgage".

This replaces the old wording:

"60 years from the date of the mortgage application subject to 35 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term".

Thursday, 23 March 2017

New financial trade association to be named: UK Finance – Representing UK Finance & Banking

The new financial trade association has been named UK Finance - Representing UK Finance & Banking. This was a unanimous decision by the Interim Main Board. The new integrated trade association will bring together member organisations in finance and banking in the UK. 

UK Finance will integrate the remits, skills and capabilities of six trade associations: The Asset Based Finance Association (ABFA), British Bankers’ Association (BBA), Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML), Financial Fraud Action UK (FFA UK), Payments UK and the UK Cards Association (UKCA). 

Last month Bob Wigley was announced as the Chair of UK Finance, commencing his role on the 1st March who will oversee the appointment of the Chief Executive of the new body and the integration of the existing trade associations. UK Finance is set to launch in the summer of 2017.