How long have you been a Corporate Relationship Manager and what does the role involve at Nationwide and The Mortgage Works?
I first came into account management at UCB Home Loans in 2006. I worked with many key accounts, explaining what we did in the self-certification field - an interesting challenge! I then moved over to The Mortgage Works just prior to the merger with Nationwide.
I'm always looking for ways to highlight how both Nationwide and The Mortgage Works are ahead of our competitors - I want Nationwide and The Mortgage Works to be the brokers number one choice!
Which mortgage clubs and networks do you support?
I support LSL, which includes Primis network, TMA mortgage club and now Personal Touch, Connells and SimplyBiz - all very different propositions.
What attracted you to this role and what do you enjoy the most?
The role has an interesting combination of activities that I find challenging. I enjoy representing Nationwide to the market, and explaining to people what we do and where they can use us.
I’m also involved in the wider business, specifically where we have relationships with the valuation arms of our accounts, for example e.surv and Connells Surveyors, Conveyancing and Asset Management. I’m always looking to build upon these relationships and to find ways where we can do more business together.
A part of the role I really enjoy is when I attend events, meeting advisers and presenting on both our propositions and the wider market. The job is full of interest and variety and no two days are the same!
What are some of the big improvements Nationwide has made recently?
It’s been a very exciting time at Nationwide recently with some major new initiatives and enhancements to our proposition. One of the most important was the return of free legals to our remortgage range, as it now gives the choice between free legal support or a cashback for members who want to use their own solicitors.
Another enhancement was to increase the 95% LTV products up to £350k - a major help to First Time Buyers in the more expensive areas of the country.
We’ve also worked to make our service simpler and more efficient. We now have automatic new build offer extensions that help with delayed building, and a pilot on new build valuations where we need to make fewer visits to the site.
Also, with further improvements and simplification of proofs required, we’ve helped with the packaging of cases.
With market leading products and an easy to use service, I think we have a winning formula.
What changes can brokers expect to see from lenders regarding Open Banking?
I think we’re at the beginning of this journey and so it’s not immediately clear where it might take us. Initially, the focus is on current accounts but it’ll eventually develop and open up to our world of mortgages.
At this point, I think we’re searching for the app that really makes a difference to our members lives, then we might see some real excitement over Open Banking. Ultimately, I think consumers will be able to make better informed decisions and execute them more swiftly.
So, what else have Nationwide and The Mortgage works been up to lately?
Recently, we’ve not only re-emphasised our support for the housing market with many improvements in the intermediary space, but we’ve also shown wider support for the housing needs in the country. In November 2017, we announced a partnership with Swindon Borough Council to provide a significant community-led housing project, in Swindon, and we’ve provided funds to help local housing projects around the country - a true reflection of the roots of our business as a Building Society.