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New code for home reversion

Safe Home Income Plans is working with Sofa and Aifa to develop a guide to help intermediaries offer advice on home-reversion schemes if the sector is not regulated.

Ship is concerned that home reversion will not come under the rule of the FSA before mortgage regulation starts in October.

It is working on a new code of practice to look at the compliance regime and the role and powers of arbitrators to ensure consumer protection.

Ship is also looking at introducing a new category for intermediaries but chairman Jon King says it is unlikely to offer them direct membership.

He is more interested in finding a way to offer them an association with Ship, either with Sofa and Aifa or through a product standard letter, for example.

Ship was originally working with the Association of British Insurers and the Council of Mortgage Lenders to draw up a voluntary regime for the sale of home reversions. But the scheme was dropped when the ABI and CML withdrew their support in case it was interpreted as replacing the need for Government regulation.

King says: “IFAs are concerned about minimum standards because of PI insurance and Ship can add weight to the advice they give. We are working with Sofa and Aifa to put in place a mechanism so that IFAs can get involved in the sale of reversion plans.”

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