Legal & General has unveiled SmartrFit, a mortgage criteria search tool and affordability calculator for advisers.
Combining Legal & General’s own mortgage search criteria tool, SmartrCriteria, and a new affordability calculator, results from SmartrFit inform advisers which lenders match their clients’ particular circumstances and the maximum loan amount they would offer. The tool utilises lenders’ own affordability and lending criteria.
SmartrFit also carries out 11 criteria checks when calculating affordability to determine whether a particular lender matches the borrower’s requirements. Advisers are also able to further refine suitability by inserting additional criteria of their choice, to enhance and customise results. The tool also allows advisers to see why a particular lender was a match, which helps to evidence selections for particular products.
SmartrFit will first launch for residential mortgages, with buy-to-let mortgages following early next year.
Kevin Roberts, director of Legal & General Mortgage Club, said: “The pandemic has created a lot of uncertainty for advisers as lending requirements and criteria have drastically changed. Advisers want accurate tools they can trust to help them provide the best service to their clients and provide quick outcomes for them. Legal & General is leading the market with the launch of SmartrFit. This is the next step in a technology journey for the mortgage industry. When the results say the mortgage will fit, it will. SmartrFit brings certainty to advisers and increases operational efficiencies at what is a very busy time for the industry.
“Technology has the power to change our market for the better. Tools like SmartrFit will help to create operational efficiencies for our market, while giving advisers and lenders valuable insights and data to help improve the services they provide.”
In a survey to advisers conducted by Legal & General Mortgage Club since the reopening of the mortgage market, 37% of advisers said a typical mortgage application is taking at least four weeks to move from application to offer. Pre-pandemic, 49% of advisers said straightforward cases were only taking one to two weeks.
For more complex cases, 44% of advisers said it is taking at least six weeks to offer since the re-opening of the mortgage market. In part, these delays have been the result of keeping up with ever-changing product criteria as lenders withdrew and relaunched products to market due to the impact of Covid-19. With SmartrFit, lenders can add, amend and verify the data themselves so advisers can be assured of the accuracy of the results and quickly find the right solutions for their clients.
Roberts added: “SmartrFit is part of our ambition at Legal & General to lead the advised mortgage market. While we invest in technology for a better advised mortgage journey, we also want to be a champion for advisers as we continue to demonstrate the value of advice with consumers and recognise the great work that so many in our industry do through our Mortgage Club Awards. We really think there is a bright future ahead for the advised mortgage industry and we are committed to supporting advisers as they continue to play a vital role in the mortgage journey for borrowers.”