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Knowledge Bank - the UK’s first criteria search system, launches PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 07 September 2017
The mortgage market is about to change.  Today sees the official launch of Knowledge Bank, the UK’s first criteria search system. It will radically change the way that brokers search for a lender when looking to place a mortgage, saving hours of time, especially on more complex cases. 

It provides brokers with the ability to search lenders’ criteria in seconds at just the touch of a button and is already saving brokers hours in wasted time phoning help desks.

Knowledge Bank comes to market with 43 of the main lenders on board, with more lenders uploading their criteria to Knowledge Bank every week.

Knowledge Bank is a fully searchable database of more than 18,000 completed criteria categories across:

· Residential mortgages
· Buy-to-let
· Second charges
· Equity release
· Self build
· Overseas mortgages

Knowledge Bank was developed by a broker for brokers with the express aim of ‘helping advisers keep advising’. It was borne out the frustration of having to spend hours on the phone to help desks or trawling lenders’ websites in order to find which lender would take a case with a certain set of criteria, for example a client with CCJ’s, a basement flat or who has been self-employed 18 months.

Knowledge Bank is incredibly simple to use, and can perform a search in seconds. Brokers can also search multiple criteria in one search, with results displaying which lenders will lend against one or more of the criteria categories searched for.

Knowledge Bank has also been endorsed by compliance directors, as every search performed can be saved. Results can be saved as a PDF or printed out; they will be automatically time and date stamped with the broker’s name and verified by lenders. The results can therefore be saved in a broker’s file as ‘evidence of research’ alongside product sourcing results, supporting a broker’s recommendation to their client.

Knowledge Bank is a completely independent company. It launches today, but has been operating and refining its proposition for more than a year. It is already on its third generation of technology, with constant improvements coming on board almost weekly as brokers and lenders provide feedback. It is not based on algorithms but on real lender data that lenders upload themselves to guarantee accuracy.

Nicola Firth, CEO of Knowledge Bank and its parent company Compass Systems says, “Knowledge Bank has been designed to reduce the amount of time that brokers spend searching for the right mortgage and increasing the amount of time they spend with clients. Our aim is have every piece of criteria a broker might need all in one place and eliminate the need to call help desks. It has been designed to be as simple to use as possible, with searches that take seconds.

“Knowledge Bank has also been embraced by lenders who now only need to update their criteria information once and once only. They love the idea that all their criteria can be held in one place, for brokers, networks and mortgage clubs to check, eliminating the need for complicated spreadsheets and enabling their BDMs to spend time on genuinely complex issues.”

Broker Anita Smith, Practice Principal at Smith Mortgage Services Ltd, says, “Let’s face it, most of our time as brokers is spent researching criteria in order to place a case. Knowledge Bank is the tool that has saved us time, by pointing out the lenders that can help in a particular situation and telling you straight away which lenders could not.”

Philip Smith, compliance manager of First Mortgage says, “Knowledge Bank has certainly helped me greatly when undertaking file checks as to why certain lenders have been recommended, particularly if they do not feature particularly well in the traditional sourcing systems. The fact that advisers are able to supplement their traditional research with documented evidence of criteria driven research has been of great benefit to me.

“More importantly our clients receive a better experience as we are now able to identify with greater certainty, the lender most likely to be able to assist. We thus save vital time by no longer applying to the wrong lender in the first instance.”

Louisa Sedgewick, director of sales for Vida Homeloans, says "Knowledge Bank is just the innovation that the mortgage market needs. It should transform the way that brokers look for mortgages and the way that lenders display their criteria. We've been really impressed on our conversations with Nicola and her team and are committed to continue to support this initiative."
 

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