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FCA alters consumer BTL fee

FCA alters consumer BTL fee

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has revealed that it has altered the criteria regarding consumer buy-to-let (CBTL) fees following a number of complaints.

Responding to the complaints and citing a high proportion of firms that have a registered for CBTL activities, the FCA has now modified its rules so that only firms without permission to carry out any regulated activities will pay the CBTL flat fees.

Robert Sinclair, Chief Executive of the Association of Mortgage Intermediaries (AMI), said: “We are grateful that the FCA has acknowledged some of the issues AMI raised around the minimum fee.

“The FCA has gone some way to reducing the burden on small mortgage brokers by removing the additional CBTL fees.”

Despite the changes, Robert insisted that a £300 consumer credit permission fee should also have been abolished.

“…The continued inclusion of the consumer credit fee is not insignificant.

“AMI fundamentally believes that consumer credit activities should not require mortgage intermediaries to hold a separate permission as they are already accountable under both the broader FCA principles and specific conduct rules.”

In April, FCA consultation paper 16/9 proposed charging £400 for CBTL lenders and £200 for both CBTL advisers and arrangers. 

The minimum fees for a small mortgage broker would have increased to £1,584, comprising a £1,084 minimum fee, the £300 consumer credit fee and the £200 CBLT charge.

However, AMI and an unnamed intermediary firm challenged the FCA’s justification for charging separate fees for CBTL loans.

Instead, they suggested that the FCA include the fees in the existing minimum fee structure.

Under the new rules, small brokers’ fees for 2016/17 will now be £1,384, which is unchanged from the previous year.

The FCA revealed that its total levy for advisory arrangers, dealers and brokers in 2016/17 would be £73.7m, down 1.6% on 2015/16. 

In August, a broker called for the FCA to introduce a no-claims discount on fees for firms which had never received a complaint.

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