Simon Read: Mis-sold a mortgage? Don't use rogue firms
Saturday 12 March 2011
Ambulance chasers are becoming a major blight on the financial services industry. I'm talking about the claims management firms that contact people suggesting they may have been mis-sold a loan or mortgage. When folk hear the word "compensation" of course they're interested. But there's simply no need to go through – and pay – an intermediary to get recompense if you've been mis-sold by a bank or other lender.
This week I learnt of a particular irksome pair of rogues who are using their mortgage industry connections to encourage brokers to approach their clients with the promise of, presumably, riches if their claim is successful. I'm not going to name and shame the pair as I don't want to give them any further publicity, but both are reasonably well known in the mortgage broking and subprime sector.
In fact, in a classic case of poacher turned gamekeeper, both have been professionally involved with some of the lenders who may have been guilty of mis-selling. They will probably say that their inside knowledge helps their current role as claims managers. An alternative view is that they may well have been up to their necks in the mis-selling scandal and are now hoping to profit from it all over again by taking fat fees from borrowers.
The firm – and they're not the only ones by a country mile hoping to make a mint from the business – is hoping that mortgage brokers will accept money for putting their clients in touch with the claims managers. I suspect that the only ones who will be tempted to do so will be those who encouraged clients into taking out the wrong loan or unnecessary insurance in the first place. In other words, rogues looking to maximise profits from the very people they may already have disadvantaged.
Please don't think I'm having a go at mortgage brokers. The reputable firms still do a good job in helping people to find the right finance. But it looks as if the dodgy ones who encouraged clients to lie about their employment status or flogged them expensive cover are finding new ways to bleed people dry, which is alarming.
The regulators should take a stronger line in shutting down unscrupulous claims managers. Frankly, anyone who thinks they may have been mis-sold a mortgage or insurance should be able to take their own case to their lender or on to the Financial Services Ombudsman.
There really is no need to pay middlemen to chase compensation against a lender, especially when they may be the people who were responsible for many borrowers getting into a financial mess in the first place.
Independent Partners: Get fee-free expert mortgage advice and find the right mortgage deal for you.
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
Shock poll shows voters believe Ukip is to the left of the Tories
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
New era of cheap oil 'will destroy green revolution'
Ukip founder Alan Sked and Nigel Farage 'begged Enoch Powell to stand as a candidate'
Ukip candidate jokes about 'shooting peasants' in racist and homophobic rant
iJobs Money & Business
£40000 - £470000 per annum + bonus: Ashdown Group: Java Developer / J2EE Devel...
£45000 - £55000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: An exciting opportunity h...
$125 - $175 per annum: Carlton Senior Appointments: Senior Wealth Manager In...
$200 - $350 per annum: Carlton Senior Appointments: Managing Producer Office...
Day In a Page
A deceptively spacious, beautifully presented Georgian home with 3000sq ft of living space and five reception rooms
A five-bedroom Victorian home with four receptions, superb gardens and paddock in Pembury
An eight-bedroom house on the south side of the The Green with cinema, wine cellars and summer house
This 17th century beauty is full of rustic cosiness, while the detached home office means you can also run a business
This five-bedroom red-brick beauty overlooks the village green and sits in just under two acres of land
Four exclusive apartments in a Grade II-listed former medical school with 2,275 sq ft of living space and 18ft ceilings
A five-bedroom terraced house on the popular Peterborough Estate, ideally located for both Eel Brook Common and South Park
A state-of-the-art farm-building conversion on the former Cliveden Estate, with 11,420sq ft of internal space, cinema and wine cellar
A three-bedroom, 15th-century cottage with original features in the picturesque village of Sissinghurst
A six-bedroom terraced house with large south-facing roof terrace, cinema room and wine cellar
A new seven-bedroom home built in Queen Anne-style with swimming pool and parkland views in Mortimer
A listed, four-bedroom farmhouse in the rural hamlet of Rushall with detached barn, four acres of gardens and paddocks
A first-floor flat with two bedrooms, a spacious reception room and communal grounds in a leafy part of London
A three-bedroom flat with a spacious rootop terrace and balcony, accessed from a private gated courtyard
A Grade II-listed pile with six bedrooms, stables and 39 acres of grounds in Standlake
A two-bedroom flat with boutique hotel-style interiors, close to the foodie haunt of West End Lane
A two-bedroom flat in a beautiful old vicarage, with many original features, close to the city centre
A three-bedroom 16th-century home with an aga kitchen, private gardens and heated outdoor pool, in Hadleigh
A three-bedrom home in sought-after Queen's Gate Mews, with Italian marble-finished bathrooms
Surrounded by glorious countryside in the village of Udimore, sits this impressive four-kiln oast and barn conversion
A five-bedroom house in the picturesque village of Kettlewell, north Yorkshire
An 18th-century former coaching inn with original staircase, open fireplaces and beams throughout
A Grade II-listed Georgian town house with three bedrooms and a south-facing courtyard, near Arundel Castle
Feel on top of the world at this über chic penthouse on the 37th floor of one of Europe’s tallest blocks.
A Grade II-listed Victorian villa with six bedrooms and two further cottages, all with spectacular sea views
A grade II-listed, Georgian cottage with mature 50ft garden, perfect for summer entertaining
A magnificent Georgian pile with turrets, seven bedrooms, a heated pool and four acres of gardens
Fairoak Farm has five bedroom suites, gym, outdoor swimming pool and golf course
Chic two-bedroom river-fronted flat with a private lift that delivers you directly to your home
A spectacular seven-bedroom Tudor pile, once owned by Henry VIII, with 18 acres of land
A seven-bedroom Georgian property previously used as a picturesque wedding venue
A split-level flat in a church conversion with two en suite bedrooms and 1,200sq ft of living space
A three-bedroom bungalow situated behind an impressive stone wall, £645,000
Windsor Castle overlooks this three-bedroom Victorian cottage located on one of Windsor's smartest roads
Chapel House is a former vicarage with nine bedrooms in the beautiful Upper Wye Valley
A five-bedroom B&B and separate owner's accomodation with potential for conversion
Enjoy summer by the Thames in this two double-bedroom converted warehouse in Rotherhithe village
A one-bedroom, luxury apartment with private gym and concierge service in Moorgate
A four-bedroom house in Hermitage Gardens with three reception rooms and landscaped gardens