View more on these topics

Kevin Duffy on MORTGAGES

Here is the charge sheet.

First, the rampant house price inflation afflicting the UK. Sections of the press are intent on talking the market into a crash. Yes, in places, prices are up by 20 per cent on last year but what too few reporters outline is that the pace of month-on-month inflation has slowed considerably and is even in reverse across some regions. But why spoil a good story with a balanced commentary?

Second, there is the spectre of rampaging interest rates. It is probably a good thing that borrowers are cautioned over the potential perils of a 6 per cent base rate but surely the more onerous and topical story rests with spiralling credit card and personal loan debt and the unsatisfactory way in which this brand of debt is regulated and promoted?

Third, we have the concept of self-certification for the employed which even became a major TV serialisation. I find it ironic that two journalist clients of my own were allowed to buy their first homes only as a result of the assistance given them by Birmingham Midshires in this regard. Black pots and kettles spring to mind.

Fourth, there is the plight of the endowment holder. The weekend broadsheets continue to produce case study after case study highlighting the impact of shortfalls. In the first instance, caveat emptor applied on all these. But furthermore, shouldn&#39t journalists really be challenging the successive Governments and regulators who in an albeit high-inflationary cycle condoned growth projections at wildly ambitious levels? And why are compensation payments not being compulsorily redirected towards paying off the mortgages?

This brings me to my final point. Picking easy fights. Several journalists spend a disproportionate amount of time attacking insurance companies, fund managers and IFAs.

I am all for assaults on fat-cattery, improper marketing ploys, and financial fraud but too many pieces are vacuous and only serve to undermine public confidence in a profession which is world-class.

The UK faces three major challenges on the financial services agenda – getting financial planning on to school and university curricula, solving the shortage of affordable housing and challenging the Government to introduce worthwhile incentives for people to save for retirement.

Instead of chasing headlines which cast our profession in a dubious light, it is the reporting of what is not being done on these critical fronts which should be emptying the ink wells. But I am not holding my breath.

Kevin Duffy is managing director of Hamptons International Mortgages


Woolwich Plan Managers – Woolwich Capital Growth Plan

Type: Guaranteed equity bond Aim: Growth linked to the performance of the FTSE 100 index Minimum-maximum investment: £3,000-£500,000, Isa £7,000 Term: Six years Return: 30% of original investment at the end of year three if the index has risen by at least 30% or 107.5% growth in index at end of term Guarantee: Original capital […]

Management buyout at Key Retirement Solutions

Specialist equity release IFA Key Retirement Solutions has announced a management buyout from Chesnara, formerly part of Countrywide Assured. The board of directors comprises four members of the existing management team who have invested private equity in the company, managing director Colin Taylor, business development director Dean Mirfin, operations director Paul Wilson, and sales director […]

Insight Investment – Insightt Foundation Property Trust

Type: Closed-ended fund Aim: Income and growth by investing in UK commercial property Minimum investment: Lump sum £2,000 Investment split: 37% retail, 33% industrial, 30% offices Isa link: Yes Pep transfers: Yes Place of registration: Guernsey Charges: Initial up to 2.5%, annual up to 1.3% Commission: Initial up to 3% Tel: 0845 850 6050

GE Life claims drawdown plan offers potential IHT savings

GE Life is introducing a phased drawdown plan it claims can minimise potential inheritance tax liabilities. The product is aimed at clients who require income but not a one-off cash lump sum and would suit someone wanting to manage the transition from part-time employment to full retirement, says GE Life. The company says it will […]


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up


    Leave a comment


    Why register with Money Marketing ?

    Providing trusted insight for professional advisers.  Since 1985 Money Marketing has helped promote and analyse the financial adviser community in the UK and continues to be the trusted industry brand for independent insight and advice.

    News & analysis delivered directly to your inbox
    Register today to receive our range of news alerts including daily and weekly briefings

    Money Marketing Events
    Be the first to hear about our industry leading conferences, awards, roundtables and more.

    Research and insight
    Take part in and see the results of Money Marketing's flagship investigations into industry trends.

    Have your say
    Only registered users can post comments. As the voice of the adviser community, our content generates robust debate. Sign up today and make your voice heard.

    Register now

    Having problems?

    Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3712

    Lines are open Monday to Friday 9:00am -5.00pm