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An open letter to Thrive Homes

10th March 2022

Dear Thrive,

I’m confused tbh. You say you’re a friendly, accessible landlord, offering Shared Ownership homes as a specialist way to buy.

Why then, after falling in love with one of your Shared Ownership homes, reserving it, and getting accepted for a mortgage on it, have you decided to reject a customer’s application, purely because they’re borrowing from a specialist lender?

They even passed your affordability check. But they’ve now lost their home to someone who you feel better fits the bill. It feels like discrimination.

Lots of people aren’t eligible for mortgages with high street banks. If they work differently or have any form of credit issue, they need help from a specialist lender. Just because they differ from the ‘norm’, doesn’t mean they’re less worthy of owning a home.

You say you’re an “ethical landlord” - what part of blacklisting specialists that exist to help those who need it most … is ethical?

You say you don’t accept “subprime” lenders. Let me explain.

Specialist mortgage lenders aren’t “subprime”. They’re the sole option for those who don’t fit into tickboxes. They’re just as heavily regulated as the big banks, adhering to the Financial Conduct Authority and the Mortgage Market Review.

We’re tired of the stigma. People can struggle with credit for a number of reasons, whether it’s job loss, sickness, or even a forgotten parking ticket. This doesn’t mean they can’t be trusted and should be punished for years to come. And especially with recent events impacting incomes and people’s ways of working - we have to get used to this sh*t show of a “new normal”.

It’s not just you, Thrive. We’re seeing this prejudice more and more from housing associations and it needs to stop.

The term “subprime” is outdated and hurtful. Our customers have worked tirelessly to improve their financial situation. We need you all to keep up with a changing industry, bring some innovative thinking and empathy, and stop closing the door to deserving people.

Empathy and good business practices aren’t mutually exclusive. Ready to chat when you are.

Jonny Moulton

Haysto CEO & Co-Founder, and specialist lender customer

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