ANZ redeploys staff to broker applications

ANZ has redirected more staff to handle mortgage adviser applications amid a growing backlog in home loan processing.

NZ's biggest bank, along with other New Zealand lenders, is struggling to process home loans and mortgage deferral requests, with loan applications also under more scrutiny since the impact of Covid-19.

Advisers report that ANZ has employed more people in its broker unit, and has also outsourced some processing to branch staff. 

It comes as lenders' processing capabilities come under pressure from mortgage deferral requests, extensions to mortgage holidays, due later this month, as well as new home loan applications. 

Brokers say ANZ and other big lenders are reviewing home loans more closely, with extra attention paid to borrowers' future financial security amid the Covid pandemic. 

As a result, turnaround times have suffered, causing ANZ to rejig its processing team in recent weeks. 

The processing delays have caused difficulties for home buyers keen to complete property purchases.

One adviser said: "This causes all sorts of issues for those buying, and several are taking huge risks by going unconditional without an unconditional offer, as agents are insisting on five-day finance clauses, which in most cases cannot be met."

An ANZ spokesman said the bank re-adjusts its broker processing team at times of increased demand.

"The number of staff we have managing applications from brokers changes depending on demand. There’s currently strong demand through our broker channel, and some of the conversations are more complex than usual due to Covid. We’re finding some customers’ circumstances have changed and we’re requiring more information to make an assessment."

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