Paul Hampton, Approved Mortgage Solutions
Sarah Spence

Member Article

North East mortgage firm expands in size and staff

A North East mortgage firm is once again expanding their office space from 800sq ft to over 1000sq ft to accommodate more staff in the coming year due to increased levels of business caused partially by changes in regulation.

Approved Mortgage Solutions have been based at the North East Business and Innovation Centre (BIC) since 2007 starting out in a three person incubator office.

In 2009 as the company grew they needed a larger office and although there was not an office to suit, the BIC accommodated them by knocking two offices into one larger one in the Slipway Centre. The office boasts panoramic views of the River Wear.

Once again in 2014 the need arose to increase office space and once again the BIC were able to help by taking a wall out and joining an adjacent office to their existing office to make one large open plan room for the company. All work was done out of hours so Approved Mortgage Solutions had no down time while the work was done.

Paul Hampton, practice principal, explains: “We currently have eight advisers and three administrators. Because we will be increasing staff numbers we needed more space for desks and filing. We have seen an increase of 40 per cent in our business levels from last year due to the Financial Conduct Authority announcing that all mortgages must be on an “Advised” basis rather than “information only” and the extra duty of affordability now placed on the lenders.

“There is a lot of negative attention about these changes but there are also positives for people wishing to take out a mortgage. It means that lenders can be more flexible when underwriting a case. When we put a mortgage proposal forward to a lender, we can support the case with factual evidence and can argue the case for the client so therefore the need for professional advice has never been stronger.

“The future for Approved Mortgages Solutions is looking really strong and it’s great to look back and see where we started at the BIC in just an office for three.

“We see the majority of our clients in their own homes or places of work and therefore the need for luxurious offices was not our priority. Our main concern was costs. However, we really have the best of both worlds at the BIC. The offices are nice to work from and the Atrium provides a clean, professional, informal but private space to meet clients if they prefer.

“During our time here at the BIC we have moved offices on three occasions. A huge benefit to us in this process is that our address, telephone and fax numbers have never had to change. We are a regulated company and any changes we make have to be relayed to clients, lenders and insurance companies and all stationery would need to be reprinted so to physically move offices without any costs other than moving the desks has been a significant saving.

“We work from a client bank of around 2000 existing customer and are currently looking to expand on this, because the downside of being good mortgage advisers is that people repay their debt sooner. Our clients range from the Scottish borders down to North Yorkshire and the location of our office here makes an ideal choice, being so close to the A19 and the A1. I am so pleased my wife Angela encouraged me to look at the offices the BIC had to offer.”

David Howell, director of operations, added: “It is wonderful to see Approved Mortgage Solutions doing so well and I am thrilled that they wish to continue their success based here at the BIC.”

For personal advice from an impartial experienced professional in relation to any mortgages, re-mortgages or related insurances please call Approved Mortgage Solutions Limited directly on 0191 516 6894 or visit

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Sarah Spence .

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