Archive: Jan 2019

The Business Assurance Team’s top 5 tips to improve case quality

Business Assurance is a vital part of your business and improving case quality can be very beneficial. Business Assurance Supervisor at Mortgage Intelligence, Sam Clowsey, has started off 2019 by sharing his top five tips to improve your case quality.

1. Note down anything useful

Make notes on anything that is considered pertinent to the case. Commenting on criteria or customer circumstance is particularly useful to an assessor.

2. Ensure everything is up to date

Where there has been a delay in submission, request up to date bank statements and payslips.

3. Inspect bank statements

Inspect bank statements to identify additional current accounts and financial commitments. All active credit must be recorded in the fact find or commented on if recently cleared.

4. Explain why your recommendation is suitable

Ensure the justification in the Reason Why Letter clearly explains why a recommendation is suitable to a customer’s requirements. High level or generic explanations are not considered appropriate.

5. Check the documents

Check documents to ensure that they have been copied in full. New copies will be required where parts of passports or payslips are ‘cut off’. Bank statements should be consecutive and where applicable, both sides of the document must be scanned.

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Looking ahead to 2019. The importance of having a strategy!

2019 – the start of a new year, new plans and a new strategy! There are plenty of opportunities that lie ahead this year and Sally Laker, Managing Director at Mortgage Intelligence, highlights the importance of having a strategy.

Having a clear ambitious but also achievable strategy is essential for every successful business. So here are some top tips to help you make the best out of the year ahead.

Road Map

A strategy is a plan to enable you to get to where you want to be in a specific time scale. Think of it as a road map to get you from A to B, it stops you getting lost and it keeps you on the right track to ensure you reach your destination. 

Decide on your goal

Firstly, decide your destination or goal for the business, what do you want to achieve this year, what are your business priorities, growth plans and areas you want to explore?

Identify potential opportunities and threats

Understand your business, identify the strengths and weaknesses that could hold you back. What are the potential threats and opportunities (SWOT) and have you taken outside factors into account in this changing world? A SWOT analysis is a simple but effective way of jotting down all possibilities that might thwart or supercharge the plan.

Involve key people

It is so important to involve the key people within your business to make sure you have the right information and insight to build your strategy and agree the goal that you want to achieve.

Develop objectives

Once you have agreed on your goal you need to develop some key objectives that should summarise the priorities that will deliver that goal.  They need to address KPIs, resource, and budget requirements.

Once you have agreed the key objectives you will be able to put the meat on the bones, by translating those objectives into action plans for the people in the business that can deliver them. These could also apply to suppliers and third parties. Once these are agreed and geared to deliver the key objectives, you stand a really good chance of delivering your goal.

Create a strategy document

Finally, the most important part, formally create a strategy document, clearly defining the goal or vision for the business, with key objectives needed to achieve that goal, and the action plans underpinning the key objectives. Make sure you clearly define who is responsible for delivering them and within agreed timescales. Share the document with everyone in the business, and review it every month, make it a live document, so that you are not only checking if you are on track, but sharing good news with everyone in the business. Also tweak the plan if you need to, change frequently happens in this industry and you need to be able to accommodate unexpected curve balls! Keeping a close check on progress and pushing forward each month is the key to success.

Whatever your strategy looks like, we’re here to help! We have a wide range of services available for you on Broker Zone, from marketing materials to compliance support exclusive products. Make sure you’re making the most of what we have to offer! Visit

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M&S Bank adds Mortgage Intelligence to intermediary network

M&S Bank has appointed Mortgage Intelligence to its list of mortgage intermediary partners.

This follows a number of new mortgage broker appointments last year and marks the start of an ongoing growth plan for M&S Bank’s intermediary network throughout 2019.

Paul Stokes, head of products at M&S Bank, said: “We offer a complete range of mortgage solutions with some additional specific solutions to help first time buyers realise their dream of home ownership as well as supporting families who want to help their loved ones take their first step onto the property ladder.

“The appointment of Mortgage Intelligence is another milestone for our growing intermediary channel, enabling even more customers to get the M&S-standard they have come to know and expect from the brand, when they make the most important purchase they’ll ever make – their home.”

Sally Laker, managing director of Mortgage Intelligence, added: “2019 promises to be an innovative year for M&S Bank so naturally we are delighted to be adding them to our growing lender panel.

“It’s great to see such a recognisable and well-respected brand making first time buyers a cornerstone of its proposition, and I have no doubt that network embers will find M&S Bank a valuable addition.”

M&S Bank launched its first mortgage range last year, offering a number of fixed and tracker options available to home movers and customers looking to remortgage. It offers a first-time buyer range from 95% loan-to-value, and a 35-year maximum term, a free valuation and £1,000 cashback.

The bank is working in partnership with Shelter, the housing and homeless charity. As part of this, it will donate £25 to Shelter for every M&S Bank mortgage purchased across both its direct and broker channels.