The Financial Ombudsman has insisted it can not investigate the Bank of Mum and Dad, despite thousands of reports of oppressive lending practices and unusual repayment terms it imposes.
The nation’s tenth largest mortgage lender gave its “customers” almost six billion pounds towards property purchases last year, though many recipients of the funds have reported being asked to agree to terms not usually associated with home buying.
One such customer of the Bank of Mum and Dad, Simon Williams told us, “I borrowed thirty-five grand as a house deposit, which I promised to pay back, as you do. But that wasn’t enough for them, oh no. They wanted more, much more.
“Can you imagine if Natwest would only lend you the money for your house purchase if they could see your kids once a fortnight? Or maybe join you on that family week away in Devon next summer? That would be considered a very weird condition of lending, right.
“Why can’t we just agree on a repayment schedule and be done with it? I don’t see how regular FaceTime calls with my children should have anything to do with repaying a financial debt.
“They had no interest in seeing my P60, or taking copies of my passport, they just wanted to know where I would be having Christmas dinner this year – that one seemed very important to them. I got the impression the entire deal hinged on my giving the right answer.”
A spokesperson for the Financial Ombudsman told us, “Look, we get it, you’d like us to step in and make the terms less onerous. But we’re not stupid, we’ll take on loan sharks and shady bankers – but we wouldn’t dare to get between a grandma and her grandkids.