Having focused last month on lenders’ use of property data to manage valuation selection and therefore capacity issues, it has been interesting to see the media focus on the issue as mortgage brokers and consumers feel the effects of longer turn-around times in areas of peak demand.
Peter Bolton-King, Residential Director of RICS, last month commissioned an enquiry to consider the challenges facing property valuation, and a BBC radio programme focused on supply and demand fluctuations driving valuation fees downwards. It is clear that this trend will reverse in today’s environment of raised professional indemnity costs and rising demand as the heat is felt of a market on the rise.
In the same BBC programme, Richard Sexton, Business Development Director at e.surv was keen to place matters in context, rightly pointing out that the large panel managers who service the majority of mortgage lenders still have average valuation turn-around times measured in days not weeks, which in the overall framework of a home move likely to take several months, will only impact consumers in a small minority of exceptional cases.
Surveyors are particularly focused on process improvements, and recent experience of rolling out our mobile technology platform amongst over 1000 of the country’s busiest valuers has shown that efficiency improvements are achievable, which combined with an industry wide recruitment drive is growing overall capacity.
So, whilst industry capacity is a concern, and something the lending community is particularly live to, it’s clear that between data driven decision making and technology driven efficiency in the surveying process itself, this is an issue which can be managed effectively.
Landmark Quest, part of Landmark Information Group, continues to work with both lenders and panel managers to ensure that whilst solutions are targeted at assisting with capacity concerns, they also have a keen eye to ensuring a risk-based approach can be demonstrated to regulators. In addition to this we find ourselves applying a wider range fraud detection and control to all of our clients’ solutions as it becomes key to show that whilst some of the market excesses of the noughties appear to be returning, systems and controls are now available to ensure risk is absolutely minimised.
Product Development Director, Landmark Information Group