more 2 life has always had a reputation for innovation – having been a pioneer of medically-enhanced LTVs and interest-serviced plans. This customer-centric focus has continued in 2018, fuelled by securing our latest funding partner (our fourth overall) and the launch of our Maximum Choice plan.
Full of highly flexible, modern lending features, Maximum Choice has proven extremely popular with advisers as new business volumes continue to exceed pre-launch expectations. It offers the most flexible Drawdown option on the market with minimum withdrawals of just £500, and flexible capital repayments from just £50.
This innovation has contributed to another record year for more 2 life. Applications are up 89% and completions are up 64% in 2018 compared to 2017. We will receive around £1bn of loan applications this year, with completions of around £650m, increasing our market share by around 33%.
We have also surpassed £2bn of loans under management. It took almost 10 years to reach £1bn in August 2017 but just 14 months to add the second billion. This phenomenal growth in 2018, a mixture of new lending and back-book servicing on behalf of third parties, is a testament to the high regard in which more 2 life is now held within this industry.
Beyond our own business performance, we have contributed to the wider growth, success and development of this market. For example, for the second year running, our adviser-focused webinar programme – designed to help educate and inform advisers across a spectrum of equity release topics – has achieved the coveted CII-accredited CPD status.
We have also expanded our social media Influencer Marketing Programme, to amplify positive messages about the growth of equity release and also assist a select group of ER advisers to increase their reach and resonance with their followers and connections. In 2018, our Programme has achieved the following:
• 57.7% increase in monthly reach of brand mentions (60.1k Jan -v- 104.1k Sept)
• Average of 49.86% monthly share of voice on social media across ER market (closest competitor average = 24.1%)
• 100% of advisers opted into our Programme have improved their reach on social
We are recognised not only as innovators in product design, but also servicing as we continue to enhance and improve our market-leading online portal which we recently rebranded as ‘fastpath’. This is leading to ever-shorter ‘App > Offer’ times as our real-time online servicing innovation eliminates paperwork and accelerates decision-making. For example, our fastest time from a submitted application to an issued offer is now just 4 hours and 40 minutes (including the valuation of the property).
more 2 life continues to lead the market in terms of product design, range and options. We are proud to offer the widest choice of LTVs, rates and modern lending features helping fuel the extraordinary growth of the equity release.
With further product launches and innovation planned before the year end, more 2 life deserves to be recognised with this award as a leader of product design and progression in the equity release market.