The Association of Mortgage Intermediaries (AMI) says the gap between branch and intermediary product offers has narrowed considerably, and now favours the intermediary in some cases.
AMI’s latest guidance note to members on the dual-pricing issues currently facing the market also claims some lenders’ attempts to increase their branch business have failed.
As part of AMI’s discussions with the FSA, the regulator reiterated it does not expect firms to recommend lenders or products they cannot access.
However, the note claims the difference between branch and intermediary mortgage offers is now narrowing after widening considerably over recent months.
Chris Cummings, director general of AMI, says: “Across the market, the differential between branch and intermediary offers has narrowed considerably – and in some cases favours the intermediary again.
“These may be early indications but they are welcome and we will be monitoring the pricing position day-by-day.”
The AMI also says figures suggest mortgage intermediaries have actually seen an increase in business this year, meaning consumers are not being tempted into bank and building society branches as many had feared.
Brokers have expressed concern potential borrowers would be tempted by headline rates from bank and building societies, and would not receive a full advice service when applying for a mortgage.
Lastly, AMI has announced it will soon publish a report on lender pricing activity, and is seeking to map out and record recent market events to help members evaluate their current financial position. AMI members can read the full note here.
At the height of the dual-pricing crisis, IFAonline launched a dual pricing campaign, with an unprecedented response from readers. However, the FSA refused to back down on the issue and the problems facing the broker community have yet to be fully resolved.
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