Knowledge Bank, the UK’s largest criteria search system, has this week launched the ‘Criteria Clinic’ for registered brokers.
To be held on Mondays over the next six weeks, the Criteria Clinics will invite a panel of experts from a cross-section of lenders to discuss the issues and hot topics that brokers are most concerned about.
Each week’s session will take an in-depth look at a particular area of lending. Brokers will be able to ask questions of lenders and discuss criteria issues that they have encountered. They will have their voice heard by the lenders on the panel regarding any issues they are finding. It will also give brokers an insight into what different lenders are experiencing.
A first Criteria Clinic was held this week to see if the concept worked and to judge the demand for future sessions. The subject was placing self-employed cases and 165 brokers registered to take part. It was such a success that not only did Knowledge Bank commit to holding at least another four Criteria Clinics. Next week’s session has already had 123 brokers sign up – on the same day as registrations opened.
Remarkably, some brokers actually placed their complex cases ‘live’ on the session, with the lenders demonstrating how other brokers can place similar types of cases. Placing cases live on the Criteria Clinic will now become a feature of all futures sessions.
This week’s ‘self-employed’ session was hosted by Nicola Firth, Founder & CEO of Knowledge Bank with a panel of experts made up of: Mark Whitear, head of sales from Foundations Homeloans; Richard Miles, area manager for Swansea Building Society; Francesco Do Pietro, national account manager from Newcastle Intermediaries; and Graham Carter, head of lending for Beverley Building Society.
The next ‘Criteria Clinic’ is on Monday 13th July at 12.30pm with the subject being discussed that of first-time buyers and higher LTVs.
Lenders participating and answering brokers’ questions include:
- Adrian Moloney, Group Sales Director, OneSavings Bank
- Tim Vigeon, Head of Lending, Buckinghamshire Building Society
- Andrew Millard, Corporate Account Manager, Accord Mortgages
- Neil Tribick, Business Development Manager, Furness for Intermediaries
Attendees who attend the full session will be sent learning certificates which can be used for CPD.
Future subjects over the coming weeks will include: HMOs, contract workers, equity release, holiday lets, adverse credit and semi-commercial properties.
Nicola Firth, founder and CEO of Knowledge Bank, said, “Here at Knowledge Bank, our users know that we are much more than ‘just’ a criteria search system. We’re very focused on equipping brokers with all they need to be able to place their cases and part of that is providing them with the knowledge and learning to give them the edge over their competitors and deliver the best possible outcomes for their clients. When it comes to criteria, we make sure we always have our brokers’ backs.
“We wanted to do something that was really different to anything that’s out there and which was entirely focussed on helping brokers to better understand certain areas of the market that are of interest or importance to them. There were some amazing and surprising insights which came from our lender panel experts and, amazingly, we managed to place some cases while we were live. This was so popular it will continue to be a feature of other clinics.”
Tony Columbine of Quilter Financial Advisers commented, “This was really different and the informal style of the session was brilliant and I got a lot out of it. I’m really looking forward to joining in with more of these on the different subjects that are coming up. The support Knowledge Bank provides for brokers on criteria is unrivalled.”
Richard Miles, area manager for Swansea Building Society said, “The Knowledge Bank Criteria Clinic was a great way for brokers to discuss with lenders, how they apply their criteria and in particular how this is applied to cases for the self-employed. The interactive nature of the session using case examples really brought the clinic to life ensuring there was real value for the brokers in attending.
“For lenders like us at the Swansea, it allowed us to demonstrate how our personal, tailored and common-sense approach to lending by manually underwriting cases can really help brokers. A big thank you to Nicola and the team at Knowledge bank for organising and I hope to be able to participate in more such sessions going forward.”