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Crystal News

Property Development Finance Doubles In 2014

Tuesday 05 Aug 2014

The total property development finance handled by commercial finance specialist Crystal Mortgages has doubled so far in 2014, according to new figures. The company reports that it has issued terms on mortgages totalling £20,641,220 compared to £10,359,736 for the same period last year, with the total number of completions up 33% year-to-date.

An increased level of confidence being shown by lenders has been cited as a main reason behind the rise, with the number of available products being offered by Crystal Mortgages rising from two to six over the last year. Up to 75% of total costs are available as well as 100% of build costs. Rates are as low as 4% above the Bank of England Base rate while loans are available from £25,000 to £100 million.

Joe Breeden, Managing Director at Crystal Mortgages, said: "Development finance has consistently been in demand in recent years but there has been a shortage of suitable projects and lenders have been reticent." "Now lenders are returning and we are seeing development finance picking up very quickly, not just within the M25 area and on land with planning permission, but across other areas of the UK on unplanned sites." He pointed to a new building project in Lanarkshire as a good example of the kind of business being done. An experienced developer required funding to complete 44 out of a total project of 51 houses.

Crystal Mortgages utilised the seven unencumbered units along with the site to complete 100% of the remaining build cost, with the first drawdown taking place just two weeks after an offer from one of the company's lending partners on a facility of just over £1 million. Joe continued: "Development finance often requires a fast response and we have a team in place that has the specialist knowledge to put the right deal in place with the right lender.

"As a company we can help to provide finance for the purchase of the site, construction costs, infrastructure and services, ancillary professional costs and the capitalisation of interest, within our standard lending criteria." "We will also consider providing finance for all forms of residential and commercial development from conversions of existing buildings through to new build schemes and everything in between."

Crystal Mortgages appoints Commercial Completions Manager

Wednesday 30 Apr 2014

Crystal Mortgages has appointed Philip Charlwood to the newly created position of Commercial Completions Manager in a move designed to further streamline the application process from enquiry to drawdown.

Charlwood will be primarily responsible for liaising with brokers, clients and solicitors to ensure efficient conversion of pipeline cases at legal stage. In addition he will handle the processing and assessment of documentation submitted in support of mortgage applications.

He completed his Law Degree at the University of Leicester in 2009 and passed the Bar Vocational Course (BVC) at Nottingham Law School in 2010. Since 2004 he has held several roles at Lloyds Banking Group.

Crystal Mortgages has achieved substantial year-on-year growth and recently announced 2013 as its best financial year in the company's 35-year trading history with terms issued on £479m worth of applications. The figure is 62% up on 2012 and 94% ahead of 2011.

Joe Breeden, Managing Director at Crystal Mortgages, said: "One of the most frustrating aspects for applicants when applying for commercial lending is to get through to the legal stage and see the process collapse for reasons outside of their control.

"The appointment of Philip will ensure that this process becomes a far clearer, more defined stage whereby a BVC trained professional is handling and chasing every aspect. Very few firms offer this as a value-added service, and we realise it is critical to seeing more business through to completion."

Crystal Mortgages Appoints Joe Breeden Managing Director

Thursday 13 Feb 2014

Having played a leading role in three years' successive growth, Crystal Mortgages has promoted Joe Breeden to the position of Managing Director.

Joe initially joined the business in 2010 when sub-contracted by MBC Accountants as a Corporate Finance & Strategy Consultant, before joining the board full-time in 2011 as Operations Director. He qualified as an accountant in 2007 following his Graduate Internship at Burgess & Associates.

During his time, Crystal Mortgages has achieved substantial year-on-year growth and recently announced 2013 as its best financial year in the company's 35-year trading history with terms issued on £479m worth of applications. The figure is 62% up on 2012 and 94% ahead of 2011.

Alongside the business's leading commercial mortgage, bridging and development products, the business has also used the slowdown in the economy to launch innovative lines including finance for start-up and non-status clients and limited company buy-to-lets at 85% loan-to-value (LTV).

Joe replaces Roger Dewsbery, who held the top position under the title of senior underwriter at Crystal Mortgages for over 10 years and will still retain a key board level role within the company. Andrea Dewsbery remains as Chairman.

"It is an honour and a privilege to take the reigns at Crystal Mortgages at a very important time in the company's development," said Joe.

"We have grown at a unparalleled rate since 2010, but the strategic growth goals remain realistic and these will be realised through excellent customer services, reliable and flexible relationships with our partners and the release of sought after products in what remains a tough lending environment.

"As has always been the case every application will be singularly assessed by a knowledgeable financial adviser to improve approval numbers, and this thoroughness will help enable a shift in attitudes whereby SMEs call on a specialist distributer, with a whole of market panel, before their high street banks."

Crystal Mortgages Reports Record Year

Wednesday 29 Jan 2014

Crystal Mortgages has reported it's best financial year in the company's 35-year trading history, and stated figures will improve further in 2014 as high street banks continue to decline SME business.

From October to December 2013, terms were issued on £142.9m worth of applications giving an overall figure of £479m for the year. These statistics place the company 62% up on 2012, and 14% up on the previous best year of 2008.

Annual deal highlights include a £20m development loan in Woolwich, a £3.75m leveraged management buyout, a £900k bridge-to-let, a 100% loan-to-value application for £750k for a stalled development and a 12 day reduction in average case processing time for the year.

While completions for the year were also up by 35%, the company believes this figure should be better.

Joe Breeden, director at Crystal Mortgages, said: "In 2013 we utilised 19 lenders to complete all applications, but reading across the data there is a lot of fall-out and this can be directly attributed to shortage of products in the marketplace and the lack of flexibility with the approvals processes.

"Throughout 2014 we will see far more new products come to market which will mean easier deal placement, and the increased competition in the bridging market is welcome. These factors will definitely boost our acceptance levels once the initial applications have been assessed and agreed.

"In addition we are working towards a shift in attitudes from SMEs whereby a specialist distributer, with a whole of market panel, will be the first port of call rather than a high street bank. This is not an easy task, but the market is seeing a paradigm-shift in the behaviour of those seeking finance."