London property finance: How can Enness help?

A lot has changed since 2007 when we opened the doors of our first Enness office in a challenging market amidst the wake of the Northern Rock crash. Our commitment to our clients however has remained steadfast. Even back then, Enness was born out of a commitment to fill the huge advice gap for high net worth (HNW) borrowers, particularly foreign nationals, who were increasingly attracted to London property. High street banks and lenders just didn’t cater for this demographic and we recognised that our clients required a more bespoke, holistic and sometimes niche approach in order to achieve their property aspirations. 13 years on, we’re still doing exactly this – just on a much larger global stage. 

In the wake of our international office openings in Monaco, Dubai’s DIFC and Jersey – and with many more in the pipeline – we wanted to take the opportunity to remind you of who we are, what we do and how we can help you with your property financing needs.

 

Enness is a mortgage broker – pure and simple 

We work on your behalf to source and negotiate the best possible mortgage for you or your client’s circumstances. We an unrivalled global network of over 300 lenders, ranging from small building societies to challenger banks, alternative lenders and global private banks.

Enness excels when it comes to solving complex mortgage requirements, negotiating very high value or loan to value (LTV) mortgages, and working with challenging structures, individuals or scenarios.

Don’t just take our word for it! You only have to look at our trophy cabinet to see how the finance powers that be have recognised the quality and excellence of our work in the market. We have won ‘Best Large Mortgage Broker’ at the British Mortgage Awards in 3 out of the last 4 years, and were also awarded ‘Best Mortgage Broker’ at the Coutts Mortgage Awards in 2019.

 

What types of mortgage lending does Enness arrange?

Whether you need help with a property purchase, to refinance an existing loan to a new lender, or to release equity from an owned property, we’ve got you covered. Our mortgage offering includes:

  • Residential Mortgages 
  • Buy to Let Mortgages 
  • Commercial Finance 
  • Development Finance 
  • Bridging Finance 
  • Asset Finance 

 

Who is Enness’ typical client?

At Enness, we don’t deal with the ‘typical’. We work in the most complex part of the market and so it’s no wonder that our clients come from all backgrounds, countries and require our help and advice in all manner of situations.

In 2019 we arranged property finance for 78 different nationalities, across 12 countries internationally – the largest mortgage offer coming in at a huge £42 million.

We have helped Middle Eastern royal families, American hedge fund managers, premiership football players, international business owners, pre and post sale entrepreneurs, recent divorcees and retirees. And of course, not forgetting everybody in between!

We have no criteria, no minimum loan amount and we work tirelessly for anyone who asks us to. Often our clients have not managed to find exactly what they want elsewhere or are referred to us from a whole host of advisors and introducers who are well aware of our expertise in navigating and providing winning solutions to the most complex of cases.

 

Where does Enness lend?

Technically, we can arrange mortgages anywhere in the world.

Sometimes regulation restricts us from directly brokering a solution, and if that is the case, we work with our trusted partners and other firms to get the right solution for our clients regardless of their circumstances.

Our major markets can be found wherever there is a solid lending and property market with international appeal. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • The UK and crown dependencies such as Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man
  • France
  • Monaco
  • Spain and the Balearic Islands
  • Portugal
  • Switzerland
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • Greece
  • Prime American cities such as LA, New York and San Francisco

We have however arranged finance much further afield in locations such as the Middle East, South Africa, St Baths, Mustique and other desirable international locations.

At the crux of the matter, it all rests on whether we can find and/or convince a lender to take security and offer a loan within the region in question. If that is impossible, we will most often leverage another international property, release equity and use that to fund the purchase instead. If there is a solution to be found, you can trust in Enness to find it.

 

How does Enness really add value?

We specialise in the areas of the market where high profile and mainstream lenders don’t operate. This includes but is not limited to:

  • High-value mortgages over £3m 
  • High LTV – up to 100% in some circumstances 
  • Mortgages without Assets Under Management (AUM)
  • Mortgages where there is low income or serviceability
  • Mortgages for non-residents or foreign nationals to the country they need finance in
  • Politically exposed persons and those with checkered histories
  • Complex ownership structures, Trusts and other examples
  • Difficult, unusual or unique property types
  • Bridging and short-term finance – especially high value and international

 

What partners does Enness work with?

We work with a huge range of professionals to solve their clients mortgage requirements, including anyone who can benefit your case from private banks and fiduciaries to tax advisers and family offices. 

 

What market challenges can Enness help to overcome?

The property finance space is ever-evolving and as a result, so are the challenges. Recently we have seen some particular challenges surface repeatedly throughout our dealings with clients, including:

A hyper-fragmented market and varying grades of advice and regulation

It will come as no surprise to you that much of the market is unregulated; barriers to entry are low, experience differs and the routes by which people can access finance varies greatly. 

On a regular basis, we see a multitude of blind introductions, clients accepting lending much more expensive than is available, people being forced into unregulated positions purely because the adviser does not have regulated permissions, and individuals taking bridging finance when there are plenty of other options to explore first.

Plus it shouldn’t be overlooked that with the number of new lenders in the market, the property finance arena has become a very difficult one to navigate. The scale of options available can be hugely overwhelming, and that’s even before you even consider other barriers such as language, culture and nationality.

Our world-class team of industry experts have built relationships with an array of different trusted mortgage providers across the board, all of whom take the time to make sure you never get lost in the detail or feel outside of your comfort zone. We have a lending panel which is unrestricted, allowing us to cater for all nationalities, political statuses and even the most complicated of financial situations. 

You can rely on Enness to only ever provide you with the very best advice on the market.

The trials and tribulations of valuations

When you finance a property – either when you are buying it or restructuring the debt – the lender will always need a new valuation. The valuation is almost always instructed by the lender themselves and for their own benefit.

The surveyor market is enormous, and in more recent years the valuation process is closer to a dark art rather than a scientific exercise. But when the end result is so important to your financing plans – it is vital you use the correct one. We have recently seen huge differences in valuations returned by different surveyors, on the same property, at the same time. At the time of writing this article for example, Enness CEO Islay Robinson has 3 valuation reports for the same property in Prime North London on his desk – the valuations reading £10.5m, £11m and £13m!

This isn’t the surveyors fault, they are unguided and unaware of the consequences, however for the client an inaccurate valuation can be fatal to their property financing.

At Enness, we always make sure the correct surveyor is used; all the information of the request is provided to them and we gather as much evidence to support the valuation as possible.

 

What is Enness’ process?

Our process is very simple and is designed to limit your work and maximise your confidence.

  1. Call or email us, day or night and we will reply at our soonest convenience
  2. We will connect you promptly with the broker best suited to your requirements 
  3. The broker will take the time to understand your circumstances inside out
  4. We will then source the best possible, or most likely solution for you
  5. We will negotiate hard on your behalf to get the right terms and pre-agree as much as we can with the lender
  6. We will present the best solution for your review
  7. If you are happy, we will then start preparing the paperwork to submit the application 

We limit the amount of paperwork and ask you for the absolute minimum, we will be clear and honest with your chances, the risks and what is possible. Once the application is in we will manage as much as we can to ensure the transaction is executed in the time frames you need.

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