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Brokers and lenders have agreed to work more closely together to promote growth in the industry, following the second joint roundtable between the Financial Intermediary & Broker Association (FIBA) and the Association of Short Term Lenders (ASTL).

The discussion from the meeting held on June 14 in London identified and agreed action points on three main issues around applications, upfront fees and the FIBA Professional Partners Panel.


According to delegates, the quality of initial enquiries for finance applications remains a significant issue for both brokers and lenders. It agreed that lenders should be setting a minimum standard for introduced applications to avoid a domino effect of negative outcomes caused by sub-standard submissions.

The panel agreed that lenders needed to be clear on the type and amount of information they required and, as an action point, it was agreed that FIBA should collate a list of standard questions and guidelines for initial submissions, which brokers could use as a starting point.

Upfront fees

The panel was generally in agreement that in such a competitive market, brokers needed to have enough confidence in their business to not have to rely on upfront fees.

FIBA Professional Partners Panel

It was agreed that solicitors in an ideal world should not accept cases they weren’t set up to deal with – especially when it came to two- or three-day turnaround times in bridging finance – or for which they lacked the necessary sector knowledge.

Borrowers need to be guided towards the right choice of legal support for specialist cases, and brokers were claimed to be best placed to provide them with initial recommendations.

FIBA now plans to compile a register of recommended solicitors for borrowers, a move which was unanimously supported by the panel, combined with the need to categorise solicitors by specialism and for the inclusion of regionally based firms.

Adam Tyler, executive chairman of FIBA, said: “Under this joint initiative between FIBA and the ASTL, our roundtable meeting demonstrated the value of bringing interested parties together from the legal, lending and broking sides to discuss and decide on actions that benefit all parties, but ultimately improves service to our customers.

“We are seeing the advantages that can be gained by trade bodies cooperating to bring their members together in this way.”

Tyler said close cooperation of members will bring mutual benefits for both.

He said: “We all want the best for our industries and members and by working together we can make a bigger impact in a shorter timescale.”