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Monty’s Stand (It’s Just Not Cricket)

14th July 2009

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Like many people I was glued to the telly watching Monty’s glorious stubborn stand against the Aussies together with an inspired Anderson. Talk about a lesson in standing firm in the midst of tough times, this was classic Ashes and left me bounding into work the next day determined to see off whatever is bowled at me.

What it does go to show is that being adaptable and having the guts and determination to stand firm goes along way.  Like many of us out there, I have had my fill of being bullied and put into situations not of my own making, having to stick up for people or things I don’t believe in. Don’t get me wrong, I have always been outspoken, but tried to do it behind closed doors, well at least until some things went a bit too far!

Thankfully, I am lucky enough to now be in an environment where speaking your mind is encouraged and creative ideas welcomed.

The point is that there is much to be said for having guts, and standing up for what you believe in. I hear a lot of talk about the way certain employees are treated in tough times and for me it shows a lack of management skill and understanding just to hit out at staff, rather than welcoming their ideas and help. We are, after all, all in this together.

Even in these tough times there are alternatives, with young idealistic companies springing up who would welcome quality individuals looking for a fresh challenge in a dynamic environment.

There is much to be said about Treating Customers Fairly, but perhaps not enough about Treating Consultants Fairly!

Speaking about this, I see that many banks have come under pressure again for “unfair” bank charges, specifically aimed at those struggling with payments and potentially falling into arrears. For me, it is about time this was sorted out once and for all.

Does it really cost £40 to send a letter saying you are behind in your payments? Each time?

Whilst I have been more understanding than most about lenders issues at present and the increased costs they are facing themselves, fees such as this, at the very stage that customers need some empathy and help are nothing short of scandalous.

We will unfortunately continue to see a rise in people struggling especially once interest rates begin to rise before house prices have had a chance to increase to enable those in negative equity to remortgage onto fixed rates that are affordable.

Lenders must know that this is a potential massive problem in the making and should all be making provisions to help, following the lead of lenders such as Nationwide and Halifax in making loans available to those existing customers in this situation.

The more people who find themselves in these situations, the more fees they will be charged then the more this issue will be covered by the press. Hardly a way for banks to help to rebuild their battered reputation.

It only takes a couple of lenders to take the brave move of reigning in fees such as this to gain some much needed PR and show their customers they really are focussed on looking after them and helping them in the bad times, as well as in the good.

Anything else, as Ricky Ponting might say, just isn’t cricket!

Bow Terrier

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Andrew Montlake

About Monty

Andrew Montlake, Director and Spokesperson for Coreco, gives his honest and forthright views on the mortgage market, economy and all things property related. Monty was voted "Mortgage Personality of the year 2008", "Best Press Spokesperson" in 2011 and is the current holder of the British Mortgage Awards “Best Marketeer” title. Expect expert analysis, delivered in a down to earth style with a side helping of exuberance.