John Charcol senior technical manager Ray Boulger has slam-med lenders for leaving damaging footprints on customers’ credit records when making a mortgage enquiry and believes this approach flouts FSA rules.
He says: “Most high-street lenders – Halifax is an honourable exception – try to inhi-bit shopping around by leaving a hard footprint even when a customer just asks for a decision in principle rather than making a full mortgage application. This blatantly contravenes FSA rules, with only a few footprints needed to crucify a credit score.”
Boulger says this makes intermediaries a vital resource for customers when looking for a mortgage.
The FSA says it backs the credit reference best practice guidelines, produced by Experian, which advise firms to use quotation searches, which leave soft footprints, when a customer asks for a decision in principle. The regulator advises borrowers to ask lenders to make a quotation search instead of a credit application search when making a mortgage enquiry.