Launching soon, Masthaven Secured Loans will be offering 2nd charge secured loans from £5,000 to £100,000. Their aim is to enter what is still a relatively subdued market and gain market share by offering competitively priced products to clients who are in need of this type of lending.
We speak to chief operating officer Stuart Aitken:
What is the best thing about being in the secured loan business?
This is a massively underserved market, presenting a huge opportunity for those with funds available to lend and the will to build a substantial presence, supported by a strong, respected existing brand. Brokers still able to work in the secured loans market have also ‘been through the fire’ over the last few years, coming out leaner and fitter, and deserving of more lending support to help them grow their businesses and the market in general.
What keeps you focussed?
Dedication and medication.
What qualities do you look for in your employees or colleagues?
Integrity, diligence and the ability to overlook my shortcomings.
Are you an optimist or a pessimist?
A logical positivist.
What did you want to be as a child?
The ticket man at Fulham Broadway station.
What will be the greatest challenge facing the secured loan industry in the coming months?
The biggest immediate challenge is to re-educate the consumer that their options are not closed off simply because their existing lender has turned its back on them, happier to milk their existing loan book than to lend new money. FCA regulation of secured loans is also on the near horizon – any business that kids itself that it is still far enough off to ignore is asking for trouble.
Who or what makes you laugh?
The selflessness of bankers and the honesty of politicians.
Do you dread Monday mornings?
No – that’s when the medication kicks in.
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
My inability to grow a credible ‘Frank Zappa’ moustache.
With whom would you most like to have dinner?
Stephen Fry, Richard Dawkins and Noam Chomsky.