The Meeting Place

Introducing three bridging specialists and the role UTB has in their world

Kira Stein
Kira has worked at UTB for 7 years. She is half (and speaks fluent) German and has two young children. In what little spare time is left, she loves to travel and enjoys cooking.

Bradley Illman
Bradley has worked at UTB for over 5 years. He is an avid supporter of Queens Park Rangers and spends the rest of his time with his wife and three children at their home by the sea.

Katy Nolan
Katy joined UTB as a Loans Administrator for Specialised Mortgages a year ago and recently moved to the Bridging team. Outside of work, Katy enjoys time with friends and travelling around the globe.

Talk to a broker about what puts a lender at the top of their pick list for bridging finance and the answers ‘speed at first enquiry’ and ‘reliability of decisions’ will always come out somewhere near the top.

UTB has always worked hard to provide a quick and efficient service, and the bridging team has won several awards over the years for doing just that. However, not being a bank to rest on its laurels, the team has taken a close look at how it dealt with new enquiries and decided it could do better. Enter, the Internal Sales Team.

Bradley Illman and Kira Stein, two bridging specialists with nearly twenty years of industry experience between them, formed the original team with Katy Nolan recently moving across from the Mortgage department. Their aim? To ensure that brokers receive a slick and professional service every time they call with a new business enquiry.

Bradley explains how the team is making such a difference to UTB’s bridging enquiry turnaround times and the service brokers receive. “We’ve established the team as the first point of contact for brokers wishing to discuss a new case. The feedback we’ve had from our broker partners has been extremely positive. Even if they have a good relationship with a BDM, it’s usually quicker and easier to pick up the phone to Kira, Katy or myself. We can talk through the proposal, discuss the proposed structure, the security and exit options available and we’ll know pretty much straight away if it’s a deal for us. We’ll generally issue DIPs (decisions in principle) within a matter of hours of offering terms and from there the proposal will be assigned to a case manager to see it through to completion. By then we’re already discussing the next enquiry.”

Kira was one of the original team put together when UTB first entered the bridging sector in 2010. She enjoys having the freedom to consider proposals and structure solutions without having to tick boxes.

“We’re a very flexible lender and we approach enquiries from a position of wanting to do the deal rather than finding reasons not to. We know the marketplace and we offer an extremely competitive set of products. We can put together a very compelling offer for the broker and their client and we can do all of this on the phone, during that first call.”

Gavin Diamond, Commercial Director – Bridging Finance, commented: “Bradley, Kira and Katy’s experience in dealing with straightforward and more unusual cases, for example those involving trusts, off-shore entities, corporations and charities, enables them to discuss and approve a wide variety of regulated and unregulated proposals. The team issues over 100 DIPs a month.

We know that other lenders have started to copy our model, so we must be doing something right. And next year, when we launch our process enhancements, the service will be even better.“