Fleet Mortgages hit £782m of lending in 2021

Fleet Mortgages, the buy-to-let specialist lender, has today announced it completed £782m of lending during the 2021 calendar year, posting a pre-tax profit of £6.97m.

Through the 12-month period up to 31st December 2021, Fleet’s mortgage origination figures of £782m meant it was 96% up on the previous year’s figure of £400m.

The lender contributed to four securitisations during 2021 under the London Wall and Canada Square securitisations programmes and was fully-acquired by Starling Bank in July last year, in a £50m cash and share deal.

Starling is now the sole funder of Fleet Mortgages and in September Fleet launched its first product range fully-funded by the Bank.

The quality of Fleet’s mortgage book remains very high with 2021 arrears in single digits and at the same level as 2020; 2021 was the seventh consecutive year of no credit losses for the lender.

Fleet’s 2021 lending mix reflects its focus on professional buy-to-let borrowers with a quarter of its business coming from portfolio landlords, and 50% originating from limited company borrower applicants.

Purchase business increased from 28% in 2020 to 42% in 2021 with Fleet suggesting this was a result of an acquisitive landlord community, supported by the growth in tenant demand and access to the stamp duty holiday. Regionally, the lender saw an increase in business outside Greater London, in particular, across regions in the Midlands and the North.

Earlier this month, the lender made a number of price cuts across its three core buy-to-let mortgage ranges – standard, limited company/LLP and HMO/multi-unit freehold blocks – to both its two-year and five-year fixes.

Service levels remain high with Fleet currently assessing documents within 24 hours, conducting same-day DIP reviews and providing valuation turnarounds within 24 hours.

Bob Young, Chief Executive Officer at Fleet Mortgages, commented: “2021 was a ground-breaking year for Fleet, not just because of our acquisition by Starling Bank and the significant opportunities this affords us, but also in terms of the way our entire team dealt with the uncertain circumstances brought about by the pandemic and our ability to lend and service to such high standards.

“We’ve always focused on the quality of our loan book, and the securitisations and the fact we had no credit losses again, shows that we are continuing to excel in this area. One of the reasons behind the Starling Bank deal was due to our risk and underwriting standards, and this continues to be a real focus for Fleet as we grow our lending volumes.

“Fleet has entered 2022 with a very strong pipeline of business, and – with the support of Starling – we continue to focus on growing the proposition and operation, recruiting quality staff and pursuing our lending ambitions for the year ahead. We want to maintain our service standards, supporting intermediaries in the buy-to-let sector, and ensuring landlords have access to competitively-priced finance to allow them to grow their portfolios.

“We believe 2022 is going to be another positive year for the buy-to-let sector and are looking forward to playing a full part in the intermediary lending space.”