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Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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We accepted an offer commercial (buy to let mortgage).

Customer Question

We accepted an offer for a commercial (buy to let mortgage). We signed the facility letter and were due to complete on the 29th May.
Around 3 pm on the 29th we understood there was an issue with some documentation.
The lender then seized the opportunity to introduce a further clause, fraudulently backdated a letter to make it appear that the new clause was always intended, and effectively held us to ransom on the following Monday, insisting that we could not complete unless we signed the new agreement.
The agreement means we have to pay 1.9% higher rate than their normal rate for HMOs if we decided to let the property as an HMO. We believe that we are their only customer with this clause and condition attached.
Can we challenge this on the basis that we signed a facility letter that did not include the uplift, and this is not the normal rate that they offered in the standard rates information?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 2 years ago.
Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you with this.
Have you made a formal complaint to the lender yet please?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

No, I wanted to check my ground first.

I'm conscious we've been singled out for bullying treatment, maybe because I challenged the lender on a valuation issue. The valuation wasn't as much as we'd hoped, but was more than the lender liked.

No one can tell me why the lender has invented a new high rate just for me

Expert:  Ash replied 2 years ago.
Just to be clear the original contact does not have this clause? What is the basis for introduction?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

The original facility letter dated the 20th May didn't have the clause

The facility letter had to be amended and was resent on the 26th May. But still did not include the clause.

On the 29th May we were due to complete. At the last minute the lender asked for greater indemnity for the works and also then introduced the letter we were asked to sign in relation to this new clause.

The letter was dated 20th May, but the clause was not introduced in the rewrite of the 26th May, and was not sent to us until the 29th May. Thus I believe it was fraudulently dated so as to appear that the lending condition was always intended. There is no reference on the letter, and no referral to the lenders normal rates.

There was no explanation - just a demand

Expert:  Ash replied 2 years ago.
Had you actually accepted the offer before the amendment, because it seems like they just changed the terms before you accepted given the greater indemnity?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

We accepted the offer within the facility letter sent on the 26th May, which didn't include the clause. As stated before, this was a rewrite, and thus if the additional rate had genuinely been part of the offer on the 20th May could have been inserted at this time. So having had agreement, they backdated the letter. I pointed out to their solicitors that changing the terms after the event isn't necessarily legal.

The indemnity is a side issue...We had refurbished the property and the lender had asked for professional sign off - our professional had £500k PI but due to the value (£995k) the lender decided at the last minute that they wanted the Professional Indemnity to be for £1m.

Expert:  Ash replied 2 years ago.
You have a number of choices at this stage:
1) Complain to the bank directly and raise a complaint.
2) Complain to the Financial Ombudsman. They regulate banks and can consider complaints as they are independent and can examine your complaint for free at:
3) Court - you could potentially issue proceedings and seek a Court injunction to make them lend the funds to you. But in that case you need to have explored 1) and 2) first.
Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?
Expert:  Ash replied 2 years ago.

I am just following up to see if there is anything else I can help with?

If this answers your question might I ask you to rate my answer before you go today please, the button should be at the bottom of the screen.

If you need more help please click reply.