Family-run lender Ascot Bridging Finance has exclusively revealed to B&C that it has secured a mix of wholesale and private funding which has enabled the business to increase its lending capacity two-fold.

Ascto bridging finance

The new funding means that the Cheshire-based bridging lender — which launched in 2017 and has just completed “phase one” of its business plan — has dropped its rates to start from 0.85%.

While it normally offers loans of up to 75% LTV, this has been reduced to 70% during Covid-19 and requires physical valuation inspections.
It lends in England, Wales and Scotland for a term of up to 12 months on residential, HMOs, multi-units, developments and residential conversions.
Ascot Bridging Finance — which can also offer dual representation — is the sister company of brokerage Ascot Mortgages, and therefore believes it can provide “common-sense lending” due to its background.

“We are now in a position to officially launch phase two of our business, after securing additional funding to lend,” said Kevin Gibson, operations director at Ascot Bridging Finance (pictured above, right).

To meet the capacity for 2020/21, Ascot Bridging Finance has expanded its specialist team, and will continue to do so into the third quarter of this year.
“Brokers and investors can look forward to newly-competitive rates, and our team are ready to service [these].”

Kevin said that the lender was confident of its robust risk plan, despite the current pandemic and the challenges it brings.

“We were borne out of a company that was launched during the 2008 financial crash,” he explained, adding that throughout and after the recession, Ascot Mortgages had been able to grow its team and business.

As a result of this experience, the bridging lender is “determined” to be around for a long time.

Ascot Bridging Finance has worked with one of their partners, Pilot Fish, to deliver an £800,000 development loan facility for a client within 2 weeks of application.

The client, an experienced property developer with a proven record of large-scale development projects, had exchanged on a property subject to planning. The property was an old school house to be converted into 3 residential units. When planning was granted earlier than expected they were given a two-week window for completion and needed a quick solution.

Head of Property Finance at Pilot Fish, Alice Williams collated all necessary information and packaged the case to Ascot Bridging Finance. Ascot specialise in bridging and refurbishment products up to £5m. They have a flexible approach that comes from being a small team meaning they can make fast decisions. Ascot acted quickly and were able to provide a solid offer within 24 hours of seeing the opportunity.

Margot Barnish, Underwriter at Ascot, moved swiftly and efficiently to ensure that completion was achieved within the required time frame and alongside Kevin Gibson, Operations Director, a commercial approach was taken when considering many points that may have caused a delay in completion. Alice sustained communications between our client, their legal team, the valuer and Ascot to ensure a positive outcome within the given timeframe.

Richard Jones, MD at Pilot Fish said:

“We knew that completing a full development finance facility within 2 weeks was going to be very challenging and very risky for the client if failed. Ascot Bridging Finance were able to mitigate this risk because in the event that the full development facility could not be signed off in time, they were willing to initially complete on a bridging loan. As it turned out the team at Ascot Bridging worked very hard and were pragmatic in their approach resulting in the full facility being delivered on time.”

Kevin Gibson, Operations Director, Ascot Bridging Finance:

“We at Ascot Bridging Finance pride ourselves on making quick and sensible risk-based decisions and want to stand out from the rest of the market by doing so. Completing a development deal within 2 weeks shows that these are not just words, in our opinion actions are more important. Working with Pilot Fish has been a pleasure and they understand their craft extremely well which makes it very easy to get these types of deals over the line and, more importantly, having a happy client at the end of it.”

Designs by DT Architects, Peterborough,

The bridging finance market is very competitive, which is why some lenders offer incentives to attract borrowers.

A lender may use tactics often used by retailers, price match guarantees where they will match the price of a competitor’s deal if it costs less.

To secure a loan property is usually used as security. Before a loan has final approval, the property must be (more…)