7-day mortgage switching demanded by vast majority of consumers

Warren Lewis
4th October 2017
Mortgage Contract

New research commissioned by EDM Mortgage Support Services has found that as many as 80% of UK consumers want to be able to switch mortgage providers within seven days.

The analysis found that  51% said it was ‘absolutely’ a good idea to do so and 29% thought ‘probably’. Only 2% said ‘definitely not’.

The research aimed to gauge consumer sentiment towards seven-day switching in the wake of the UK Government’s proposals last year to offer faster mortgage switching. It can currently take up to eight weeks to switch mortgage provider, with published transfer processing times for lenders showing most switches taking between two to four weeks.

According to the research, of those respondents that had switched mortgage provider recently, 27% said the process was difficult (22% said ‘quite difficult’) while just 6% said it was ‘very easy’. Indeed, of those that had switched mortgage provider recently, almost a third (31%) said the process was so difficult or expensive that they were put off from switching again (a further 19% said ‘maybe’).

Joe Pepper, Managing Director of EDM MSS, commented: “EDM MSS passionately believes that seven-day switching is easily attainable as the technology already exists today to enable those in the mortgage process to make it happen. For instance, the process of assessing how much money should be lent on a property can take several days but by using EDM MSS’s PRISM product, Nationwide Building Society has been able to reduce this time to less than 30 seconds.

The extended times taken to re-mortgage can be linked to the antiquated technology and processes used by the industry. Even with much of the underlying information required to complete a switch already in a data format and available at the touch of the button, the process is sadly hampered by competing systems, an over-reliance on paper documentation and resistance to the adoption of new technologies.”

According to the research, only 9% of those that have switched said the service they received from the former provider was ‘excellent’, while one in 10 said it was “poor”. In contrast, a fifth (20%) of those that have switched said the service they received from the new provider was ‘excellent’, while a further 48% said it was ‘good’. Of those that had not switched mortgage provider at all, two fifths (40%) said this was because of concerns over the complexity of the switching process.

Joe Pepper added: “Our research points to significant demand for better switching processes and outcomes by UK consumers – sentiment that we believe will only increase as powerful technologies and new service offerings influence the UK mortgage sector. In an era when technology is continuing to have a significant impact on businesses processes, data management and customer behaviours – and people are already able to switch current account and utilities providers in seven days – the pressure on the mortgage sector to follow suit will only escalate.”

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