Where do you go when you need a mortgage? A bank or building society? Or, as nearly everyone else does, do you check online first? If you do a search, you’ll almost certainly come across Habito, voted by its customers as the Best Mortgage Broker of 2020. I tried it and it came up with three viable options after Barclays turned me down flat. And that was at the weekend. Daniel Hegarty, formerly a teenage rock star, is Habito’s founder and chief executive.
The encouraging news for high-school dropouts is that Hegarty is one. “I had to choose,” he says. “Either buckle down and do my A-levels or go on a world tour with my band.” The 16-year-old Hegarty wasn’t exactly torn. He recalls that his English teacher once wrote on his report, “shows a complete lack of scholastic integrity”. But it doesn’t seem to have done him any major harm.
He left Enfield for Los Angeles and went on to freelance as a guitarist with Robbie Williams and S Club 7 among others but after eight years on the road, he decided he needed a proper job. He says: “I was a huge geek, really. All I wanted to do was build software. Anything that didn’t involve playing guitar.” In his mid-20s he came back and went to work as a technician at Wonga, the payday loan company.
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