Bluestone Mortgages launches Open Banking service

10 Jan 2019

Specialist lender Bluestone Mortgages has launched a pilot phase of its open banking solution as part of its core underwriting process.

Bluestone says it is the first specialist mortgage lender in the UK to incorporate Open Banking.

The pilot will be rolled out to a select group of advisors on Bluestone’s panel with a national launch expected to follow soon.

Supported by a service provided by Experian, the open banking solution will give customers the option to allow Bluestone to access their bank transaction data, within minutes, which will significantly reduce mortgage processing times.

Bluestone is increasingly committed to investing in technology and wants to position itself as one of the most technically advanced the lender in the mortgage industry.

Earlier this year, Bluestone was the first lender to fully integrate its loan application and workflow platform BlueLink, via an API with Twenty7Tec’s MortgageApply platform.

The business is currently commercialising BluePay and BlueDial, a payment gateway service and computerised dialler designed for small to medium sized businesses.

Recent updates from Bluestone Mortgages include their entry into the Help to Buy market, enhanced criteria for customers with an Individual Voluntary Arrangement and extending distribution to include Scotland.

Peter McGuinness, CEO at Bluestone, commented: “Bluestone is committed to being a technology-led specialist lender and proud to be the first specialist lender to deploy an open banking service into the core mortgage approval process.

“We believe innovation that will be made possible with open banking is going to change the landscape for specialist lending, particularly in areas of affordability assessment and expenditure patterns, whilst at the same removing a lot of friction associated with a traditional mortgage application process.

“We’ve made a significant in-house investment in our IT platform through 2018 with a constant drive to improve the application journey for our advisors. We see open banking as compelling; it will provide our customers and their advisors with a significantly more efficient credit application process and give Bluestone access to high quality and timely information from which to support a mortgage approval.”

Tom Blacksell, managing director of B2B at Experian, said: “A customer’s current credit position only ever tells part of the story. People’s financial circumstances are multi-dimensional and unique and we are supporting our customers as they look to keep up with a diverse and ever-changing global population.

“Open Banking has the power to help people who have found it difficult to prove they can afford a mortgage, perhaps because they are self-employed or a contractor.

“Experian’s service automatically categorises consented bank account data, so that lenders can assess how much they have coming in and going out each month, all in just a few seconds.

“Putting this information at the fingertips of Bluestone helps them to make more informed lending decisions in a much shorter time frame. It’s a great example of how the insight from open banking can increase financial inclusion and help people to access more affordable services.”

Source: Mortgage Finance Gazette