Specialist finance trade body FIBA, part of The SimplyBiz Group, saw over 1000 brokers sign up for its recent series of four exclusive live webinars conducted by Roger Morris of Precise Mortgages.
The webinars were organised as part of FIBA’s stated strategy to help raise standards and professionalism along with creating a greater understanding of the buy-to-let sector by advisers, particularly for FIBA and SimplyBiz Mortgages members.
The sessions covered the effects of legislative changes, taxation, structures of ownership, HMOs and landlord engagement and gave advisers the opportunity to hear from Roger Morris, acknowledged to be one of the foremost experts in the field, both as a lender and a landlord in his own right.
Online questionnaires completed by advisers attending the webinars showed that 30% were new to BTL, with even a small percentage coming on board as they were returning to giving BTL advice with 63% already supporting landlords as clients.
Overall, 47% of respondents were keen to expand their service to landlords, 19% were looking to learn more to establish whether to move into the BTL space and over a third wanted to offer added value to their existing landlord clients.
The session dealing with HMOs found that 26% of the audience were experiencing difficulties finding finance for them. In addition, nearly half, 49%, thought that interest rates offered were high in comparison to standard BTL rates.
According to FIBA executive chairman, Adam Tyler, the interest in the webinars had been overwhelming.
He said, “It was a fantastic turnout, given that the timing was a regular 2pm on some very sunny Friday afternoons. There were nearly 1000 brokers who’d signed up for the series and 300 for a single session, eager to learn more about taxation in the BTL industry. The webinar series as a whole received record-breaking attendances for every session, and even with one on a Friday afternoon before a bank holiday weekend! A staggering difference to the pre-Covid world.
Of course, we were fortunate to have Roger as our speaker but the overall member support for the webinars was amazing. Of course, the view of the future was mixed. 38% of attendees felt the BTL market would increase, 17% felt it would decrease and 45% felt it would remain the same.”
Adam added, “We feel our webinar series has significantly supported attendees. A pleasing 87% stated that they felt more confident in dealing with landlords and the challenges posed by the BTL market. 71% went on to say they would be actively looking to increase the number of landlords they supported over the next twelve months.
In conclusion, confidence in the BTL market among brokers remains strong and offers significant potential for growth in the future. Some advisers are hesitant about market growth in the short term, but all appreciated that there is a need to add value, knowledge and professionalism to their relationships with landlords in order to be successful in growing this sector in their business in the future.”