Spotlight on: Laleta Buctkuar
How long have you been at Assetz and how did you get into business lending?
I recently joined Assetz in June 2021, specifically to focus on bridging products and distribution. I actually started working in financial services over 20 years ago by default! I had a part-time job whilst at university as a customer account manager for HFC bank and after graduating was offered the opportunity to work full time with view to be a trainee branch manager. Luckily for me it went well, and I became a branch manager and initially worked within the realms of unsecured lending, working with HFC Bank and Citi Group before entering the intermediary market as a BDM.
What does a normal day look like in your role?
It sounds like a cliché, but fortunately no two days are the same. It’s a mixture of dealing with new and existing applications, preparing, and submitting credit reports and working closely with the wider origination team to ensure we deliver what is required and provide support to junior members. The idea is to generate new business by working with key partners, engage with relevant stakeholders and provide market commentary to relevant internal stakeholders.
What do you enjoy most about getting a bridging deal over the line?
Quite simply - delivering what we say we will do. I really enjoy providing the level of service our introducers and borrower expect and seeing the role we play in the wider market and economy.
Given the amount of bridging lenders currently in the market, what sets Assetz apart as a Bridging Lender?
Assetz’ approach to lending is not prescriptive. Being core development funders, we support land bridging for development and development-exit facilities for borrowers who are at practical completion - so we can support them from the beginning of the journey with land acquisition through the build process to term. Our pricing is driven by Loan-To-Value, as opposed to security type, size or location and lending over whole of UK including Northern Ireland. We engage with credit teams in the initial stages to ensure support and that every deal is water tight. We are bound by common sense rather than policy which enables us to review applications on its merits, as opposed to a ‘one size fits all’ approach.
What are you currently seeing in the bridging market, and what do you predict for business growth prospects in the future – both for Assetz and for your clients?
Currently, I am seeing quite a lot of standard residential bridging, including some which require light refurbishment. Also, auction properties, both residential and semi commercial in the main, which require time sensitive completion. I’ve seen an increase in conversion too, whereby we have a commercial unit with residential planning and BTL conversions to HMO. Also on my desk at the moment are commercial property enquiries with planning to change use and convert planning or land acquisitions, which may require planning amendments to be in play for exit to development finance.
What keeps you focused and motivated?
Working to time sensitive deadlines maintains my focus. On a wider level, understanding our business strategy and ensuring I play my part in delivery of successful ‘real world lending’ outcomes.
What’s the best thing about working at Assetz Capital?
The people – particularly the support and experience within the company. The diversification of product, position, and the business desire for supporting wider issues such as supporting greener builds
What’s your favourite activity outside of work?
Netflix, I love to binge-watch box sets.
What is the one thing you can’t live without?
Family! I have two young boys, 8 and 2, who provide me with much joy and motivation.
- November 15, 2021