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MCCB&#39s move to jettison bad IFAs

The Mortgage Code Compliance Board is gearing up to weed out bad mortgage intermediaries from the good by introducing “fit and proper standards”.

The initiative has been met with relief from IFAs who say they welcome any move to give the industry a more professional image and stamp out bad practice. The MCCB proposes the first “fit and proper” vetting of mortgage intermediaries in the autumn.

It says too little is demanded of mortgage intermediaries when they register. It wants to tighten up the process by demanding more thorough credit checks and references.

The board is aiming its vetting process at intermediaries who are not currently regulated by the FSA. It estimates around 3,000 out of 13,000 firms will be scrutinised.

In the MCCB&#39s annual report, which is due to be published in mid-September, chief executive Luke March says: “The interests of consumer protection and the industry&#39s reputation would be best served by the introduction of entry and ongoing suitability requirements, often referred to as “fit and proper tests” for registered firms and their staff.”

London & Country Mortgages mortgage adviser David Hollingworth says: “This is a great idea. Clients who have bad experiences with intermediaries who set up and then disappear are less likely to seek advice in the future, so any move to squeeze them out is welcome.”

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