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Mortgage Expo: FSA issues ‘stay out’ equity release warning

The FSA has warned advisers looking to enter the equity release market to ‘stay out’ if they are not willing to commit significant resources and investments to their operations.

Speaking at the Mortgage Business Expo in Manchester, the FSA warned firms to ensure they committed to delivering quality advice.

FSA manager of retail distribution and mortgages team Sonja Dullaway said firms must go into the market and commit to doing it properly or stay out and refer their business forward to those that have.

There was also a warning to those firms carrying out lifetime mortgage business in light of the FSA’s continued focus on this sector.

Dullaway said: “There are now no excuses about getting lifetime mortgage work wrong. If we are to go out into the market again and find firms still getting it wrong we will be very unhappy.”

The FSA also urged smaller mortgage intermediary firms to engage with its communications and turn this engagement into action.

FSA head of mortgages and credit unions Mandy Spink said they expect firms to be engaging with FSA reviews and thematic reviews and deciding if they need changes made to their businesses.

Spink also highlighted the FSA’s work in moving away from its prescriptive rule handbook to a more principles-based regulatory regime.

She said: “We are focused on the outcomes we want to achieve; we will simplify our handbook and focus on the responsibility of management to meet the responsibilities of those principles.”

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