CML chairman calls for more mortgage market certainty
Published: 8 May 2013 | Author: Bernard Clarke
The UK mortgage market needs more certainty, greater clarity, less politics and longer term objectives to deliver the healthy, sustainable and thriving housing market we all want. These were the key messages delivered by our chairman, Nigel Terrington, in his speech to over 600 guests at our annual lunch on the last Friday in April.
Focusing on these key areas and placing consumers at the core of individual business models would help create a competitive, innovative and vibrant mortgage market which will in turn help underpin the broader economic recovery in the UK.
The speech reflected on the need for the industry to understand the motives of customers and the wider community, and its impact on the development of policy. It also focused on the balance between the traditional view that lenders are unwilling to lend and the extent that consumers are unwilling to borrow. Recently we reported the initial findings of our new consumer research into home-ownership which showed that almost 80% of consumers aspire to be home-owners within a decade. We found that although the desire to own a home is as strong as ever, there is a general lack of confidence which means that people are postponing this decision.
Getting the right balance between regulation, and creativity and innovation, would also be an important step on the road to recovery. Mr Terrington said that, although customers of the future would benefit from the lessons learnt during the credit crunch years and from both the regulatory and cultural change currently underway, the industry must avoid crushing creativity and innovation. The market as a whole would benefit from the right balance of free market principles and sensible protection, allowing businesses to thrive, consumers to transact confidently and lenders to lend with predictable consequences, without shifting the goalposts.
But the main thrust of our annual lunch speech centred on the need for more certainty in the mortgage market. Greater certainty would allow businesses and consumers to have a firm, solid foundation for the future, but this could only be achieved if the government, the Bank of England and the regulators provided greater certainty and clarity in their policies and rules.