Regulated mortgage robo-adviser to launch in UK

6th April 2017, the world’s only regulated mortgage robo-adviser, will be launched in the UK in the coming months. The service will allow UK homebuyers to complete their mortgage application online in 15 minutes through a free, online portal combining robo- and live-broker advice.

Mortgage Gym empowers brokers to acquire customers independently, operate a paperless business and remain compliant under the Mortgage Market Review (MMR). As the online portal is fully integrated with consumer credit files provided in official partnership with Experian, the global information services company, Mortgage Gym solves 95% of the back-office compliance brokers need to complete. This allows brokers to focus on mediating contracts between applicants and lenders, monitoring the offer and ensuring it is enacted in a timely way.

The FCA authorised service aims to revolutionise the UK mortgage market following the introduction of the MMR in 2014, which placed onerous ‘stress-tests’ on homebuyers during the application process. It does this through offering applicants:

  • A detailed insight into the mortgages they can realistically afford within 60 seconds based on live affordability searches from 12 of the top 20 lenders. Mortgage Gym does a ‘soft-search’ of an applicant’s Experian credit file and matches it to lenders’ internal scorecards, then cross references this with daily best-rate tables.
  • The ability to upload images of all their application documents online, which are dynamically read using Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology. Then we verify instantly their identity documents electronically, removing the need to provide physical copies of those documents.
  • A whole-of-market overview of the rates on offer covering 90% of the mortgage market. Those rates most accessible to homebuyers are highlighted – based on an algorithmic assessment of their financials. We update 15,000 mortgage products, four times daily.
  • Access to final, live advice and support from thousands of brokers nationwide, which will be transparently rated by homebuyers via Trustpilot. Mortgage Gym provides users with a hybrid robo-/ live-advice portal as 57% of mortgage applicants state they want to speak with a live broker about their application.

Mortgage Gym was founded in 2016 by John Ingram, a successful financial services entrepreneur, and David Vertannes, a successful property entrepreneur. It became fully regulated by the FCA in February 2017.

John Ingram, CEO and founder of Mortgage Gym, said: “Following tighter regulation of the mortgage market in 2014, we realised the UK’s mortgage application process is archaic, inaccurate, time-consuming and ripe for disruption from a holistic, online solution. The mortgage industry in the UK is one of the last bastions of the financial services industry to still operate via paper files and telephone-based advice.

“By creating the world’s first, regulated mortgage robo-adviser, we aim to remove the guesswork, frustration and stress for homebuyers from one of the most important financial transactions in their life. For brokers, we believe our digital network will empower them to develop their own business with a steady stream of high-quality, prequalified clients without the burden of endless back-office compliance.”

Following the MMR, only 47% of homebuyers who begin the mortgage application process reach completion and 67% of lenders cite “too much paperwork” as the main source of consumer frustration.  Mortgage Gym believes an additional source of frustration for homebuyers is the disjoint between what they believe they can borrow based on comparison site suggestions, which are not based on the buyers’ financials, and the reality – which its portal aims to solve.