Keep safe and carry on: OneFamily moves to remote applications during the pandemic

OneFamily has adjusted its processes so that advisers can keep safe and carry on during the lockdown. Paul Bridgwater, the provider’s Head of Lending Proposition, explains:

“I was pleased to see that last week’s figures from the Equity Release Council reaffirmed that the fundamentals are strong for the equity release market.  It’s a positive start to a year in which many areas of financial services have been challenged by the coronavirus pandemic and subsequent social distancing measures.

“OneFamily is one of a number of lifetime lenders that were keen to ensure that, despite the physical challenges of lockdown, it was business as near to usual as we could make it for customers.  We wanted to find a way to enable people to make applications for our lifetime mortgages, despite the restrictions of the current crisis.  So, we’ve been making some changes to our processes to ensure that we can progress our lifetime mortgage applications without the need for face to face meetings.

“Advisers can now proceed applications for all our lifetime mortgage products without the need for customer signatures, before making their usual secure online application on behalf of their customers on the OneFamily portal.

“Additionally, our surveyors will be undertaking desktop valuations.  Given that this approach may provide less information than a physical valuation, we will operate an adjusted credit policy and retain part of the agreed loan for release once physical valuations can properly resume and the value can be confirmed.

“Combined with the Equity Release Council’s temporary modifications on legal advice, customers can now complete lifetime mortgages completely remotely.

“We’re all working in a challenging environment right now and lenders in this part of the market have needed to think differently.  This kind of innovation in response to customer needs has been a hallmark of the lifetime mortgage market and we are sure will support further growth into the future.”

OneFamily offers a range of lump sum lifetime mortgages with the option to make monthly interest payments or more flexible voluntary payments. To find out more please visit the website.