Mortgage advisers are looking to diversify their business offerings over the next year as worries about the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic remain strong.
According to research conducted by MCI mortgage club of 264 firms, expanding protection and buy-to-let sales were the two most likely moves for advice firms to tackle the uncertain future, both chosen by 38 per cent of principals and senior directors.
A further 35 per cent said they would also be further focusing on remortgaging customers and the equity release market.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the biggest concerns for the mortgage market held by the principals, advisers and administrators surveyed related to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Nearly three-quarters feared a fresh lockdown would affect the mortgage market over the next year, with other related issues being high priority as well.
Two thirds of advisers cited stricter lender criteria or mass unemployment as a concern, followed by 63 per cent noting the recession and a similar number expecting the adverse effect of payment holidays, furlough, and business support loans to make a mark.
Brexit was cited by just over a third of respondents as a key factor to hit the mortgage market, while only three per cent thought there would be no other big changes.
Despite this 97.5 per cent of principals and senior directors were confident regarding their business or employment over the next 12 months.
Second lockdown disastrous
MCI club head Melanie Spencer (pictured) said: “Understandably, as restrictions are eased over the country, everyone serving the market will rightly consider a second lockdown to be a disastrous event, especially as the market is beginning to gain momentum again.
“With the stamp duty cut until next year, the conditions are right for a sustainable bounce-back.
“Of course, it is surprising that Brexit didn’t rank as highly, or more specifically, an appropriate trade agreement by the end of the year. It could be that we’re on course for more economic disruption, just of a different kind.
“That said, it is refreshing to see the levels of confidence our respondents had, and that good proportions are looking to expand and diversify their business through protection, BTL and equity release,” she added.
Owain Thomas is features and contributing editor of Mortgage Solutions and editor of Specialist Lending Solutions.
He also has experience in the protection, pensions, workplace benefits and HR areas.
Owain has won two Headline Money Awards and the Protection Review’s Journalist of the Year award.