View all the latest news from The Cambridge below.
Monday 20th February 2017
2016 sees record lending levels at The Cambridge
The Cambridge achieved £265m of new mortgage lending in 2016, a record in the Society’s 167 year history. This, combined with a firm focus on offering existing borrowers competitive deals when they reach the end of their product term, led to growth of 13.5% in the overall mortgage book.
We also saw a record amount of lending introduced by our intermediary partners of £186m and doubled the number of intermediaries we now work with.
Commenting on today’s announcement, Andy Lucas Chief Operating Officer said: “The main purpose of The Cambridge is to help people buy their own homes and we’re delighted that 2016 has been such a successful year. Not only have we lent more than a quarter of a billion pounds in the local area, but we’ve also supported over 120 first time buyers realise the dream of owning their own home.
“Our dedicated Business Development Team is here to support our intermediary partners and they’ve been kept incredibly busy over the past 12 months. We fully expect them to be so again in 2017 and the year has started where 2016 left off.”
Tracy Simpson, Head of Lending at The Cambridge said: “We’re always looking to make improvements to our service, products or criteria to support intermediaries help more of their clients and we try to respond to suggestions and feedback wherever possible. 2016 saw us make changes to our self-employed proposition to help this under-served market and reinforce our commitment to intermediaries by paying retention proc fees to recognise the work undertaken when a customer comes to the end of their deal.”
Monday 13th February 2017
Moneyfacts Awards - final week to vote
We feel incredibly proud, that with your help, we've previously won Regional Lending Provider of the Year!
If you've been happy with our products and services over the last 12 months, please take two minutes to vote!
Voting is easy, and the survey can be finished in less than 2 minutes – just click the button above! You'll also be in the running to win an Amazon Echo hands-free speaker*.
*Amazon Echo hands-free speaker Prize Draw provided by Moneyfacts. Terms and conditions apply.
Friday 10th February 2017
Cambridge Select Launch 2017
Last week saw the launch of Cambridge Select 2017 when the group came together for the first time, to meet the Cambridge team and hear about some of our successes from 2016 and our plans for 2017.
What is Cambridge Select?
If you’re not familiar with Cambridge Select, it is a group of individuals (not firms) identified by The Cambridge as key to achieving our results. The group was formed in 2013 to say ‘thank you’ to these intermediaries for their continued support, for being advocates of The Cambridge and understanding our brand values.
Mortgage news archive
Friday 2nd December 2016
Join The Cambridge for breakfast
Want to hear more about how we’re making it easier for you and your customers to do business with us – then why not join us for breakfast?
We'll update you on all things from The Cambridge including changes to our criteria, such as the withdrawal of the maximum age limit and our Interest Only proposition.
You’ll also have the opportunity to enjoy a cuppa and full English breakfast with members of the Business Development and Underwriting Team.
We’re hosting two breakfasts:
Wednesday 14th December, 8.30am – 9.30am
144 - 146 Hatfield Road, St Albans, Herts, AL1 4JA
Thursday 15th December, 8.30am – 9.30am
The Bedford Swan Hotel
The Embankment, Bedford, MK40 1RW
If you would like to join us, please RSVP here by Tuesday 13th December.
We hope to see you there – if you have any questions, please call 0345 601 2744 or email the team.
Wednesday 14th September 2016
Mortgages for credit impaired and self-employed
Today we’re pleased to be launching Home Solutions, a mortgage that is specially designed for those who are credit impaired and a self-employed mortgage range to support those with less than three years' accounts.
Being able to review each case on its own merits with our individual underwriting has allowed us to launch a range of mortgages for borrowers who need a more flexible approach to lending.
Home Solutions Mortgage
Our Home Solutions mortgage is specially designed for those who don't have a perfect credit history. It might be an option if your customer had any of the following within the last 24 months:
• three or more missed loan, credit card or financial commitment payments
• up to two missed secured payments (mortgage payments for example)
• CCJs that total under £5,000
Full criteria and product information available here.
Our self-employed mortgage range is specially designed for those with less than three years' accounts.
If your customer has our standard requirement of three years' of accounts then they can select a mortgage from our wider product range.
Full criteria and product information available here.
Friday 9th September 2016
Proud to partner with you
We’re proud to partner with you, that’s why we’re directing customers to you
We're very excited to announce that our new advertising campaign directs customers to speak to their local Financial Adviser – that’s you!
We understand the value you bring to our business when you introduce your customers to us, that’s why we’re sending customers straight to you for independent mortgage advice.
“We would not have achieved our successes without your support so this was the natural next step for The Cambridge.
“We recognise the time you spend with your customers in assessing their mortgage needs, that’s why we’re fully committed to working harder for you.
“We hope you agree this is a new and exciting time not only for The Cambridge but also for you and your customers.” Kathy Bowes, Intermediary Manager
Where will customers see our new campaign?
Bedford, Braintree, Cambridge, Chelmsford, Harlow, Huntingdonshire, Luton, Milton Keynes, South Cambridgeshire, St Albans Stevenage and Watford.
Bedford, Borehamwood, Braintree, Cambridge, Chelmsford, Harlow, Huntingdon, Hatfield, Haverhill, Luton, Milton Keynes, St Neots, South Cambridgeshire, St Albans. Stevenage and Watford.
Watch our TV advert here.
Friday 2nd September 2016
We're reducing our Standard Variable Rate and our Stress Rate
Below you'll find a summary of all changes coming into effect from today including our new Standard Variable Rate (SVR), our new Stress Rate and updates to our product range.
We're reducing our Standard Variable Rate from 4.99% to 4.74%
We've passed on the full 0.25% Bank of England Base Rate cut to our Standard Variable Rate (SVR).
• SVR has reduced by 0.25% from 4.99% to 4.74%
• All discount rates linked to SVR have been reduced by 0.25%
Pipeline cases - if your client has an application in the pipeline that has not yet completed, we’ll let them know how this change affects them as part of their mortgage offer.
Existing clients - if your client’s mortgage is affected they’ll receive a letter next week notifying them of their new monthly payment.
We're reducing our Stress Rate from 6.49% to 6.24%
Alongside the reduction of SVR we have also reduced the stress rate used in our affordability calculations for repayment mortgages.
Our stress rate follows SVR +1.5% and has reduced from 6.49% to 6.24%. This will be applied to all new applications.
Interest Only mortgages will continue to be stressed at a fixed rate of 6.49%
We've re-launched our 2 Year Discounted Mortgage (Residential and Product Switch) - the headline rate remains the same however the amount we discount off our SVR has been reduced.
We have reduced our rates on all other discounted mortgages in our Residential and Product Switch range in line with SVR.
All products are available to mortgage applicants purchasing in the following counties: Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire, Northamptonshire, Essex (excluding Canvey Island), Norfolk and Suffolk.
If you would like more information about a mortgage product or to talk through a case, The Cambridge Business Development Team are available Monday to Friday 8.45am - 6.00pm and 9.00am - 12.00pm on Saturday.
Thursday 7th July 2016
Listening - the key to a successful partnership
By Intermediary and Debt Manager Kathy Bowes
After a whirlwind six months full of new regulation, Government announcements and industry shake up, now seems like a good time to reflect a little on changes we’ve made of our own.
We pride ourselves on listening to feedback and responding where we can, both directly for borrowers and our intermediary partners. I truly believe that good, solid partnerships can only work in the long term if there’s openness and transparency from both sides and this underpins the values of The Cambridge. The value we place on these partnerships was demonstrated at the end of 2015 when we started paying a procuration payment for mortgages re-placed with us.
But this isn’t all we’ve been doing. We’ve been busy making changes across the board – to our products, criteria and to systems, and there’s plenty more improvements planned.
We’ve made a series of criteria changes since the beginning of the year, all designed to help you to help your customers. Some of the changes we’ve made include:
- Removing the age limit at the end of term for borrowers
- Increasing the LTV tiers on residential and Buy to Let new build
- Removing the LTV restriction for properties in the background
- Supporting Armed Forces Personnel via the Armed Forces Help to Buy Scheme
Buy to Let refresh
We’ve refreshed our Buy to Let criteria and product range to widen the appeal of what we offer and help intermediaries meet the needs of their customers. We believe these improvements will, in some cases, make it easier for customers to access our Buy to Let mortgages.
Our biggest investment has undoubtedly been the £3m we’ve invested in a new IT platform, which has included a new portal for intermediaries to use to manage their cases. A recent IRESS survey¹ demonstrated that lenders still have a long way to go to deliver the high levels of service and IT functionality that intermediaries expect and we will continue to drive for improvement. However, we were also satisfied to see that many of the features we’ve introduced are welcomed and meet our partners’ needs. Some of these features include:
- Providing up to date case tracking via email alerts throughout the application process
- On approval of your Decision in Principle we’ll advise you of the documents required to support the case
- Allowing documents to be scanned and uploaded to support an application
- Providing intermediaries with a personalised dashboard that shows the last 10 cases placed
- Supporting intermediaries with customers who want to make a product switch – we also send an email in advance to let your know if you have customers who are coming up to maturity
Later in the year we’ll be carrying out an independent survey designed to collect feedback and suggestions from the many intermediaries we work with. I hope many of you will be involved.
But please don’t wait until then – if there’s anything you would like to see us do differently then feel free to drop me or one of the Business Development Team a line. We’d be delighted to hear from you.
Monday 30th April 2016
We’re pleased to introduce you to our newest Business Development Adviser Nicole Marsh. Nicole joined The Cambridge just over a year ago to support our Customer Contact Centre, her exceptional knowledge of the Society’s Lending Policy makes Nicole a great addition to the team.
For those of you who haven’t yet had the pleasure of chatting with Nicole, we asked her a few questions so you could get to know her a bit better!
Q. Tea or coffee, and how do you take it?
A. Tea all the way, white no sugar (I’m sweet enough)
Q. Best piece of life advice you’ve ever been given?
A. Everything happens for a reason
Q. What’s the favourite part of your job?
A. I love a good chat with our Intermediaries, getting to know them better and supporting with their cases. Of course working with Steve and Josh is always a highlight of my day too!
Q. What is your biggest success up until now?
A. Purchasing my own home at 22!
Q. What’s your favourite biscuit?
Nicole along with Steve and Josh are here to ensure you receive the best telephone support and smooth progression of your cases.
If you want to get in touch, just give them a call or drop them an email, they’ll be happy to help.
Thursday 7th April 2016
Criteria Changes at The Cambridge
Today we’re pleased to update you on some important changes to our criteria that will benefit both you and your customers.
A summary of the changes can be found below and you can view our updated Underwriting Guide here.
We’ve increased the LTV tier on our residential and Buy to Let New Builds.
80% to 90% LTV
60% to 80% LTV
Buy to Let Houses
60% to 75% LTV
Buy to Let Flats
60% to 75% LTV
Please note New Builds must have one of the following Warranty Schemes in place:
NHBC / LABC Certificate / Premier Guarantee / BLP (Buildings Defect Insurance) / Build Zone / CRL
Armed Forces Help to Buy Scheme
We can now support Armed Forces Personnel via the Armed Forces Help to Buy Scheme.
This scheme allows service personnel to borrow up to 50% of their annual salary, to a maximum of £25,000. This can be used towards a deposit and other costs such as solicitor and estate agent fees.
You can find out more about the scheme here.
No LTV restriction for properties in the background
Previously if your client had a property in the background, our lending was restricted to 80%.
Interest Only Equity Limit
The limit has increased from £200,000 to £225,000 when sale of property is used as the repayment method.
Monday 4th April 2016
We’re a finalist at the Moneyfacts Awards 2016
The votes have been counted and we’re pleased to announce we’ve been shortlisted in the following categories:
- Best Online Mortgage Provider
- Regional Lending Provider of the Year
A big thank you to everyone who took the time to vote. The awards will take place on Tuesday 7th June - fingers crossed for another successful year and a 3rd win in the Regional Lending Provider of the year category!
If you have any feedback for The Cambridge, then please get in touch.
Thursday 26th May 2016
Hot off the press - new residential low deposit and fixed BTL mortgages
Lower rates for the low deposit
Buyers who have a 5% deposit are further supported with low application fees, no completion fees and free valuation making it even easier to get onto the property ladder.
Our new 95% 2 Year Discounted Mortgage is not only about the 2.99% rate...
• it's currently the lowest 95% LTV interest rate in the market where a Guarantor isn’t required
• and there are no ERCs – giving your customers the flexibility to switch their mortgage deal, make extra payments or repay their mortgage in full without incurring a penalty!
Product Manager Dan Barker said: “High house prices in East Anglia continue to make it difficult for buyers looking for their first home, so these new products support them through the early years with low rates, minimal fees and an increased max loan size - to £400,000."
New product features for BTLs
Our new 2 and 5 year fixed rate BTL mortgages have the following features:
- free legals and valuations for remortgages
- stepped ERCs
- a minimum rental income of 125% of the monthly mortgage interest payment based on our BTL Variable Rate (5.39%)
Our 5 year fixed rate BTL mortgage also has a reduced completion fee of £800.
A summary of our new residential low deposit and BTL fixed mortgages can be found here.
Wednesday 8th June 2016
The Cambridge is awarded Highly Commended at The Moneyfacts Awards 2016
Last night The Cambridge was awarded Highly Commended in the Regional Lender of the Year category.
Jonathan Mann said “This is a fantastic achievement, we’re proud to be delivering products and a service that are being really well received by our Intermediary partners”.
We would not have achieved this without your support, thank you!
If you have any feedback for The Cambridge, then please get in touch.
Tuesday 7th June 2016
The Cambridge - supporting landlords through changing times
The first quarter of 2016 has seen Buy to Let mortgage volumes increase and like many lenders we’ve seen this trend mirrored here at The Cambridge. However market commentary does suggest that recent government policy may have had the desired effect of cooling the Buy to Let market in the short term.
This year’s stamp duty changes and next year’s cut to interest rate tax relief may lead landlords to question whether buying further properties is viable. With some lenders already making changes to adapt to the future policy, landlords could be in for a spell of tough lending conditions. The conversations we’re having with Intermediaries re-iterate this uncertainty and expectation of further change.
At The Cambridge we’re lucky to be located centrally within a region thriving with rental properties. This allows us to work closely with many of our Intermediaries on their Buy to Let cases and to understand what we can do to really help them meet the needs of their customers.
Our Buy to Let criteria and products are supporting Intermediaries such as:
- we’ve recently removed the upper age limit for borrowers
- we require the rental cover to be 125% at the current revert rate of 5.39%
- we continue to have no restrictions on portfolio size, although we do have a limit of 5 Buy to Let mortgages with The Cambridge
- our Buy to Let products launched at the end of May have no legal or valuation fees for remortgages
We believe that the improvements we’ve made will continue to support our Intermediaries and make it easier for customers to access our Buy to Let mortgages.
Alongside the bolstering of Buy to Let criteria we’re continuing to focus on the personal and flexible service we’re so renowned for. Our knowledgeable Business Development Team love to talk through non-standard cases from Let to Buys to multiple applicants and by having underwriters in the same building it’s easy to run a query past them directly.
To find out more about what The Cambridge could offer you contact our Business Development Team on 0345 601 2744.
Friday 15th January 2016
No age limit at the end of term for mortgage borrowers
We’ve reviewed our criteria and are pleased to announce, customers who are assessed as able to make repayments will be able to take out a mortgage regardless of how old they will be at the end of the term.
This applies to all BTL and residential mortgages.
We've been working towards removing upper age limits for some time so it's great to make this a reality.
The key priority for us as a responsible lender is, and always has been, to make sure the customer can afford to make repayments on their mortgage and that it’s the right solution for their needs.
In some cases we may require additional documentation. However our Individual Underwriting gives us the opportunity to review every case on its individual merits.
Our lending criteria, affordability model, minimum and maximum lending term still applies. Our updated Underwriting Guide can be viewed here.
Friday 12th February 2016
Support for Armed Forces Personnel
As a mutual provider being flexible is all part of our offering, so we’re proud to be one of only two lenders based in East Anglia allowing Armed Forces Personnel posted overseas to let out their homes without facing higher mortgage interest rates or changing their mortgage.
We assess each case on an individual basis and those who serve in the Armed Forces are no exception.
- We allow Armed Forces Personnel to let their property while they serve abroad without having to change from a residential mortgage.
This is for up to 24 months, we would then contact the borrower for an update of their situation, we would consider a further extension on residential terms or may request they switch to a BTL mortgage.
- We accept that these customers may have a history of frequent address changes and may live outside of the UK - which ordinarily may cause credit search issues when applying for a mortgage.
We are happy to consider these cases however we may require a letter from the applicant’s Commanding Officer to confirm their address history.
Our lending criteria, affordability model, minimum and maximum lending term still apply. Our Underwriting Guide can be viewed here.
Thursday 4th February 2016
Cambridge Select 2016 Launch
We first launched Cambridge Select in 2013 to say ‘thank you’ for your continued support and offer you additional benefits for being advocates of the Society and understanding our brand values.
The 2016 group came together last week to meet The Cambridge Team. They enjoyed a three course lunch and tour at Cambridge’s historic Queens’ College.
Those selected for Cambridge Select 2016 qualified as a result of the level of business given to the Society during 2014/2015 and the quality of applications submitted.
Thursday 8th March 2016
We're pleased to confirm that we're fully compliant with all MCD requirements.
Below is a summary of the changes that have taken place:
- using a KFI+
- offering Consumer BTL’s
- offering foreign currency loans for Professional BTL and product changes
- offering Binding Mortgage Offers
Wednesday 18th November 2015
Procuration fees now paid for retaining customers
We're pleased to announce that we can now offer you procuration payments when you re-place a customer’s mortgage upon maturity of their existing product.
This new initiative is the direct result of listening to your feedback and recognises the time you spend with your customers in re-assessing their mortgage needs.
When your customer’s mortgage reaches the end of its deal, if the most suitable option is for the customer to stay with The Cambridge, then you’ll receive a gross procuration fee of 0.2%.
This new initiative, which is running as a trial, is available for product switches and additional borrowing.
Click here to find out more about the benefits for you and your customers and how to complete a product switch.