The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which is a bit like the school principal for financial businesses in the UK, has told landlords: “Hey, don’t give advice about loans and pensions to people who are trying to buy a part of a house (this is known as ‘shared ownership’).”
Why is the FCA saying this? While it might seem like landlords are just trying to be helpful, there are special rules and regulations in place for giving financial advice. The FCA recently introduced something called the Consumer Duty. Think of this as a guideline that says, “If you’re giving advice, make sure you’re clear, fair, and not misleading.” But, if landlords start acting like financial advisers without the proper permissions, they could be breaking another rule, called the FSMA.
What does NHG have to say about this? NHG, who the accusation was aimed at, responded to the situation. They think that their staff member was genuinely trying to help the person trying to buy a part of a house. But they also admit that their salespeople shouldn’t be acting as financial advisers. They’re basically saying, “If someone needs money advice, they should go to a proper financial adviser.”
But what’s shared ownership? Shared ownership is a scheme to help people who can’t afford to buy a whole house on their own. It’s like buying a slice of the pizza instead of the whole thing because the whole pizza is too expensive for you. NHG is saying that shared ownership is there to help people, and they have strict rules to make sure people don’t bite off more than they can chew. They want to ensure that people don’t get themselves into a tight spot financially or miss out on buying a whole house if they can actually afford it.
In conclusion: Landlords should stick to property stuff and let the financial experts handle money advice. If someone’s looking to get into shared ownership, it’s important they chat with the right professionals to get guidance that fits their situation.