13 January 2021


Stamp duty holiday boost to mortgage sales highlights protection opportunity for 2021. 

  • 81% of advisers saw a spike in mortgage demand last year due to the stamp duty holiday.
  • 72% said their mortgage sales had grown.
  • Yet only 48% said their protection sales had grown.
  • 91% of advisers said they always discuss protection.
  • When it comes to buying – clients say they want to ‘come back to it later’. 

Research from protection challenger Guardian highlights a significant protection opportunity for advisers in 2021. In its study of 553 advisers, conducted during the last few months of 2020, 81% said the stamp duty holiday had caused a spike in mortgage demand. 72% said their mortgage sales had grown, whilst 48% said the same for protection. Only a quarter of advisers said they’d seen no change to mortgage sales, yet 46% reported no change to protection sales. 

This discrepancy between mortgage and protection sales highlights an opportunity for the start of 2021. 91% of advisers told Guardian that they always discuss protection when advising on a mortgage. When asked why they did not place protection alongside a mortgage straight away, the biggest reason given was that clients wanted to come back to it later (42%). This was followed by 21% who said their clients didn’t want to discuss it and 17% who said their clients couldn’t afford it. Only 4% said their clients didn’t think they needed it. 

This research comes as the UK begins a new lockdown and mortgage advice businesses anticipate the end of the stamp duty holiday in spring. It also coincides with news that clients continue to have an increased willingness to talk about protection. 75% of all advisers said their clients were more open to discussing protection since Covid began and this was a trend that persisted throughout 2020. 

Jacqui Gillies, Guardian Marketing and Proposition Director, said: “The stamp duty holiday provided a welcome boost for mortgage advisers last year and it’s great to hear that the overwhelming majority also discussed protection. But this research shows a discrepancy between mortgage and protection sales last year which poses a big opportunity for advisers as they go into 2021. 

“We hope all advisers will follow-up if a client says ‘I want to come back to it’ to make sure people are getting the protection they need. This follow-up conversation is not only right for the customer, but for advisers too as they look to continue to provide their valuable advice through these times of uncertainty and change.” 

Guardian wholeheartedly believes in the value of advice and only distributes through advisers. The challenger has a website to support advisers recommending Guardian – The site brings to life the protection conversation using human stories and helps explain important considerations when choosing between products. 

Guardian launched in 2018. Its award-winning range of life and critical illness products has been awarded Gold status across the board by independent research provider, Protection Guru. 

-Release ends- 

Notes to editors:

Press enquiries to Natalie Robinson, 07789 501146, 

Results from Guardian adviser survey of 553 advisers from 19 October until 30 November 2020. 

Guardian Financial Services is an appointed representative of Scottish Friendly
All products are provided by Scottish Friendly Assurance Society Limited (SFA) and we have an agreement with them to underwrite and issue the protection policies we distribute through the UK intermediary channel. As an appointed representative of Scottish Friendly Assurance Society Limited, Guardian Financial Services Limited is the market-facing brand under which we promote our proposition and engage with advisers. 

Background to Guardian Financial Services, owned by Gryphon Group Holdings
Guardian, the new life and protection insurance business, launched in 2018 and pledged to grow the protection market. The brand promise of ‘Life. Made Better.’ reflects the company’s commitment to rethink and reinvent protection for the better; making sure customers get cover that’s easier to understand, simple to buy and designed to never let them down. 

Guardian’s business partners
Gryphon Group Holdings is majority owned by Punter Southall Group as the largest equity capital investor. Its back-end technology partner is Liss Systems, the UK arm of Nasdaq-listed EXL. Its front-end technology, branding and marketing partner is Space, UK based financial services specialists. Risk partners are Hannover Re and Gen Re.