67,000 mortgage related complaints in six months

The number of complaints about home finance received by providers during the first half of this year increased to 67,309, according to figures compiled by the Financial Services Authority.

This was up from 64,220 during the second half of 2010. The home finance complaints cover both regulated home finance products and unregulated products, such as buy-to-let and commercial loans, as well as equity release and impaired credit mortgages.

Bank of Scotland, which includes the Lloyds Banking Group brands of Halifax, Birmingham Midshires and Intelligent Finance, had the largest number of new mortgage related complaints at 12,080. Lloyds Banking Group is the largest mortgage lender in the UK with a 22% gross mortgage lending market share in 2010. Almost half of the complaints (49%) were upheld in favour of the borrower.

Figures for Cheltenham & Gloucester, also part of the Lloyds Banking Group and the lending arm of Lloyds TSB, are reported separately. C&G had the sixth largest number of home finance complaints at 3,617 and 50% were upheld.

Santander, the second largest mortgage lender in the UK with a 22% gross mortgage lending market share in 2010, had the second highest number of mortgage complaints at 8,961, with 42% upheld.

Barclays Bank, the third largest mortgage lender with a 12% gross mortgage lending market share in 2010, followed closely with 8,894 complaints but 60% of complaints were upheld.

Fourth was NatWest with 4,268 new complaints but almost three quarters (73%) of complaints were upheld. Closely behind was HSBC with 4,170 complaints with 48% upheld.

Royal Bank of Scotland took 2,103 new mortgage complaints but more than four out of five complaints (81%) were upheld.

Two banks had a higher percentage of complaints upheld than RBS: Ulster Bank with 88% upheld although new home finance complaints were lower at 117 in the first half of this year; Coutts had 86% of mortgage complaints upheld but it only had 20 new home finance complaints in the first half of this year.

These figures refer only to financial services companies that received over 500 complaints in total (not just mortgages) and do not include complaints that were resolved within one day of the complaint being received.

Date: September 28, 2011
Author: Joanne Atkin