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Home of Choice favours LSL bid

Home of Choice was in talks with preferred bidder LSL Property Services as Money Marketing went to press, a move that angered The Money Group, which had tabled a rival bid.

Home of Choice chief executive Gerry O’Brien announced earlier this week that a deal was imminent and a series of roadshows would give information about the new owner, fees, pipeline business and authorisations. Money Marketing understands this preferred bidder is LSL.

Last Thursday, Home of Choice filed a notice of its intention to appoint administrators. This followed failures to pay staff and ARs the previous week, which the network blamed on delays in a deal with a potential investor that subsequently fell through.

A further statement last Friday clarified the firm was not yet in administration and that discussions were taking place with a significant investor.

The Money Group managing director Tony Murtagh has slammed the HoC directors for rejecting his bid. He believes his proposal to remove the current board went against him.

He says: “My bid was for the purchase of the network, not for it to go into administration, and everyone would have got paid. I lost out as my bid takes the board out.”

Simplicity Financial Ser-vices principal Rob Downham cancelled a meeting for ARs of HoC in the Yorkshire area on Tuesday. He says: “Does this mean we are all going to get our commission and all of our pipeline? There are going to be a lot of brokers who want questions answered.”

Home of Choice ARs have contacted Money Marketing saying they are owed up to £50,000 in backdated commission payments.

Former Home of Choice mortgage director Mal McCon-echy is set to launch his own intermediary firm, Free Range Financial Services.

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