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A milestone after M-Day

One year on from mortgage regulation, the panic has subsided and it appears that the industry has pretty much got on with things, exchanging its MCCB hat for an FSA one.

From M-Day to Easter 2005, there were visions of tumbleweed crossing the desolate mortgage landscape as the housing market slowed, the key facts illustration debate raged and sourcing systems fumbled.

But despite this, the mortgage meltdown simply did not occur. The mass consolidation that was predicted still has not come to fruition and packagers have survived with a little subtle tweaking to their propositions.

Meanwhile, Sipp fever has gripped the bigger firms, with the likes of John Charcol and Hamptons International Mortgages forging alliances to make sure they have all corners covered. The disappointment has largely come from the regulator’s mystery shopping exercises – equity release, sub-prime, self-cert, IDDs and promotions all coming under the FSA’s scrutiny. When will the industry stop using the old “bedding down” excuse?

M-Day cannot be called a success yet. The CML still questions the one-off cost of mortgage regulation and waits to see where the benefits really lie. Surely, we will only know this when the FSA speaks to the most important person in the equation – the broker’s client. Only then can its success be truly measured.

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