Skipton Building Society is to become the latest mainstream mortgage
provider to enter the sub-prime market by transforming a subsidiary into
its specialist lending arm.
The UK's sixth-biggest mutual is planning to launch a range of low to
medium-risk sub-prime products this week through subsidiary Skipton
Mortgages, which previously focused on acquiring the mortgage books of
In a move which suggests that mainstream lenders rem-ain reluctant to
offer sub-prime products under their own name, Skipton is alsorebranding
the company, which it established in 1995, as Amber Homeloans.
It will offer a wide range of products from self-certification for the
self-employed and 100 per cent loan to value mortgages through to full
sub-prime loans for borrowers with mortgage arrears and CCJs up to a
maximum of £10,000.
The range will only be available through mortgage brokers and IFAs as
Skipton has no plans to sell the loans through its branch network.
Chief executive John Goodfellow says: “The creation of Amber Homeloans
enables the Skipton group to further exp-and its mortgage distribution
channels by moving into the specialist lending market. This adds another
string to our bow and brings a contemporary look and name to what is a
rapidly developing sector.”
Amber managing director Gordon Jolly says: “Our knowledge, experience and
size guarantees credibility from day one and we quickly expect to generate
a reputation as a major player renowned for quality service and product
London & Country mortgage specialist David Hollingworth says: “We have
already seen Cheltenham & Gloucester and Birmingham Midshires go sub-prime
recently. It seems this is going to be the main trend in the coming months.”