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Santander launches video mortgage application service

Spanish bank to roll out video technology for mortgage services at 63 branches in the UK following a successful trial

Santander is the latest UK mortgage supplier to offer potential customers the opportunity to talk to an adviser via video link.

After a successful trial of the video technology, the Spanish bank is rolling it out at 63 branches in the UK.

Customers can use the system at a branch to speak to an adviser in a different location. The bank said that in the future it hoped to go further and enable customers to talk to advisers from their own homes.

Santander said the service would complement its branch, online, telephone and intermediary channels. “If a customer prefers to speak to a mortgage adviser in person, they still can, as our advisers will continue to be available in branch,” said a statement from the bank.

Miguel Sard, managing director of mortgages at Santander, said: “For most people, a mortgage is one of the biggest financial commitments they will make in their lifetime. We know that customers value speaking to a mortgage adviser who will explain what options are available to them and recommend a product to meet their individual needs.

“We are excited to offer customers this new mortgage video service, which works well alongside our existing offering.”

According to a research report from banking association Efma last year, 93% of banks thought the use of high-quality video would improve customer satisfaction. It revealed that 10% of banks intended to use video for banking services in 2016, 50% would use it by the end of 2017, and 80% by the end of 2018.

Read more about video-conferencing

The use of video technology for customer services is not new in the finance sector. In April 2014, Nationwide Building Society completed the roll-out of video mortgage consultation equipment at more than 60 branches, after a trial that began in 2013.

Also in 2014, Barclays Bank launched a 24-hour video banking service to enable customers to receive face-to-face service from anywhere.

Lloyds Bank and Halifax customers have been able to receive face-to-face mortgage advice via video link since March last year. Customers who are unable to, or prefer not to, travel to a branch can choose to talk with a mortgage consultant on their own computer.

Plummeting connectivity costs have helped to make video a genuine business tool in the finance industry. ............................................... ..................................................................................................

Read more on IT for financial services

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