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Do you expect to see less or more second charge mortgage lenders in 2018?

Time to go…

By Paul Woodworth, managing director of Gateway2Finance |

 As many of you are aware, Gateway2Finance was recently acquired by Equiniti Group PLC.

This is an exciting time for Gateway and will involve major transitions for us as we’re now part of a much bigger organisation. This has many advantages as we can now benefit from the software development, marketing, governance expertise and corporate infrastructure provided by Equiniti.

This does, however, bring to an end my ownership of the company that was first set up back in October 2008, and it’s hard to believe how quickly the past eight-and-a-half years have passed.

I remember as though it was yesterday the first few weeks in the life of Gateway, and to be honest it wasn’t that pretty. Within weeks of going live UK banks received a £37bn bailout, while in the States, George W Bush was signing a $700bn bailout bill for the US financial system. With falling GDP, falling interest rates and falling house prices the economy was entering a prolonged period of negative growth and rising unemployment. I look back now and wonder what was I thinking.

I remember in particular a conversation with Stuart Johnson, then of Ocean Finance, now First Choice Finance, who visited the office in the first week and took a liking to my chair. He commented that he thought starting Gateway at that time was a brave move, genuinely wished me all the best, but asked if he could have my chair sent to him (on the basis that I wouldn’t need it for long). We’ve had many a conversation since and he’s still waiting…

It wasn’t all bad, though, Liverpool managed to beat both Manchester City and Chelsea away from home that month and John Sergeant was busy on Strictly, proving that I wasn’t the worst dancer in the world.

Since then, we’ve seen the rise and fall of payday lending and debt management, a sustained economic recovery with the main banks in a much-improved position and a complete overhaul of the regulatory regime.

There has certainly been a great deal to discuss over the past few years and there are many big issues to debate in the future, with Brexit, the influence of Donald Trump or, more importantly with the girls in the office, which diets work best?

There are many positive things to look forward to in 2017. The increased availability of funds coupled with the greater focus on home ownership and affordable housing should result in more first and second charge mortgage business being written. There is an expectation that new lenders with broader product ranges than those currently available will enter the market and the financial services industry will continue to grow for the benefit of us all.

So, it’s good to leave on a positive note. It’s been a pleasure writing for Loan Talk on a regular basis over the past few years. Hopefully I will be invited back from time to time so you may not have heard the last from me…

Recent comments:

02-08-2017 / Gerry Johnson:

Hope your retirement from " A Word from Woody" will leave more time to concentrate on your sunbed master plan!!

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