We are an independent mortgage adviser, who also offers access to other types of financial advice.
When we started Independent James in 2007 we wanted to help make mortgages as simple and stress-free as possible.
Many of our clients come to us via word of mouth, and we are proud to provide a transparent, prompt and convenient mortgage application service.
Because we’re regulated, we continue to invest in all our staff, so you can be assured when you come to us looking for a mortgage we have skills, experience, contacts and knowledge you need.
We are also affiliated to the UK’s largest mortgage clubs, PMS and L&G and we work with all major lenders. This means we have the clout to negotiate great deals for our clients.
Looking after clients is our top priority, we continue to invest in our one-to-one service and the comprehensive administrative support needed to deliver that service.
Your mortgage can often be one of the first major financial decisions you make. We have partnerships with a number of associates. This means we can help you to plan for life’s other financial milestones.
C Foot, Director, Enterprise Logic, London
James specialises in mortgages and protection.
He has 24 years’ experience of working in independent financial services and is a member of the Association of Mortgage Intermediaries.
James is a frequent media commentator and has helped set up Independent James. He is much respected within the industry, maintaining key account status with all key lenders.
He’s a coffee lover and always at hand for a chat and a pour-over; he’s an armchair football expert, Middlesbrough mad, a MAMIL and (formerly) gym bunny to boot.
‘“I’ve been reading a lot more at present – Malcolm Gladwell, Murakami, MW Craven and Alan Bennett.”
“To me family and friends are everything. During lockdown I missed them, but I did make the most of hometime with cookalongs. Some were more successful than others!”
Fun fact: James’s entrepreneurial journey started at university when he started organising nationwide nightclub coach trips.
Mortgage Adviser and Head of Research
Oliver has been working in financial services for 11 years and has been with Independent James for the last 8 years .
He’s a fully qualified mortgage adviser having gained distinctions in his mortgage examinations.
Oliver is also head of research and recently extended his knowledge by completing the CeMap Diploma.
Oliver is determined to travel the world and is passionate about cars. “I’m keen to get back out there once restrictions are lifted to visit new and interesting places; most recently combining both interests and driving to Germany for a few laps around the famous Nurburgring.”
Oliver is a key member of the team and always ready to chat (remotely!) over a green tea. An early starter, you’ll often find him logged on at 8am - keen to accommodate client needs wherever possible.
Fun fact: Oliver has just completed a family project to convert a shop into a new large 1 bedroom flat; it quickly became apparent how much of a roller coaster any building/renovation work will quickly become!
Tom has been with Independent James for 7 years and has been one of our mortgage and insurance Advisers for over 4 years.
He has recently completed his CeMAP Diploma ensuring he is as highly qualified as possible in his field.
Tom is focused on providing the best possible service and strives to take the stress out of what can be a stressful process in buying property.
“I’m looking forward to the end of lockdown. I have a wedding planned and hopefully there’s a sunny holiday or two along the way.”
Fun fact: During his school years Tom was on the books at Chelsea FC where he was on the path to becoming a Premier League footballer. Although that didn't quite work out, it's not all bad as he now gets to work at Independent James.
Shangs has been with Independent James since 2018 and is continuing to build up great relationships with our clients and contacts. He takes immense pride in his work and is always willing to go above and beyond, keeping on top of matters involved in case progression.
Shangs completed his Certificate in Mortgage Advice and Practice (CeMAP) last year and is now on his way to becoming a mortgage adviser.
He previously worked at a local mortgage firm whilst completing his degree in financial mathematics at the University of Kent.
Outside of work he is busy looking after Simba, his cat/supervisor, who likes to make the occasional appearance during our team video calls.
He also loves to keep fit and is looking forward to being able to spend more time with friends and family in the summer.
A big football fan (Chelsea - boo!) and a purveyor of great food, so you can always find him in the kitchen cooking up different cuisines and honing his cooking skills.
Fun Fact: Shangs was born and raised in Germany.
Jo joined Independent James in 2017 with a wealth of knowledge in the protection world. She works closely with the advisers providing in-depth research and information on general insurance and pure protection.
Jo has been in the protection industry since 2010 after completing her business degree with a 2.1.
She has recently completed the 'UK private healthcare system' exam in December 2020, broadening her knowledge in the protection and PMI industry.
On a personal note, Jo has been shielding since March 2020 and learned to balance Zumba, Pilates and yoga workouts to keep her mental and physical health in check while working remotely from home.
She also gave herself a lockdown project of creating a canvas photo wall consisting of memories spent with family and friends, which spans out in the shape of a tree across the wall in her living room.
Fun Fact: Jo has found a way to have more space on the bed than her hubby by mastering how to do yoga poses in her sleep!
Charlie has been working in the financial services industry since 1985, starting his career with Albany Life, which was later merged with Canada Life. He worked in a variety of roles, including sales and technical training, before moving into compliance.
He has extensive compliance and regulatory experience, having worked for national compliance support companies including The Tenet Group, and over ten years with Bankhall PMS Ltd, finally setting up his own successful Compliance Consultancy company. He has been supporting ij since 2015.
Outside of work, Charles’ passion is travel, having been to all six continents, but there are still so many places yet to see. Fun Fact: Once appeared on Supermarket Sweep with Dale Winton…and came last!!
Dan has over 5 years experience in the mortgage industry working on the administrative side and having recently passed his CeMAP1 exam, is looking to become a mortgage broker in the near future.
A keen sports fan, Dan's spare time consists of watching West Ham, Boxing & Cricket whenever possible. Dan also spends time keeping fit and socialising, though during lockdown has become a quiz master from the comfort of home.
Fun fact: Dan used to play bass in a band, often frequenting many popular haunts in town.
Raul previously worked for a mid-sized mortgage broker, as lead administrator for 4 years, gaining an in-depth knowledge of the mortgage process. He has acquired his CF1 and CF6 qualifications and wants to use this and his experience to provide the best possible customer service to our clients.
A fitness enthusiast, Raul likes to keep active with weightlifting and calisthenics, however as the gyms are closed at the moment he aims to walk 10,000 steps everyday to achieve his fitness goals.
Raul hopes to attend the annual Wingsfest in London. Until then he likes to experiment in the kitchen with different flavours in a bid to make a combination of the spiciest/flavorsome wings!
Fun fact: Raul has been on Europe's fastest and highest roller coaster with front row seats!
Mortgage & Insurance Administrator
The newest member to the team. Lorna joined us in June, having previously worked at an independent finance company as a mortgage and Insurances administrator.
Her professional background is a combination of finance and estate agency, enabling her to assist clients through the entire process from the very beginning through to completion.
Lorna has a huge passion for travelling and will be off on a plane to a new destination whenever the opportunity arises.She has travelled a lot of the world on her own, but in her words ' there are always more places to explore especially whilst there's more pages to fill in my passport '!
Fun Fact: Lorna is a champion synchronised swimmer and completed her Olympic trials. She also used to be a freestyle swimmer for Kent, not to mention, she is a fully qualified swimming instructor!
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