"I can’t do it all"When it comes to the provision of advice services in the mortgage market, the above statement is undoubtedly correct. No one individual can ‘do it all‘ – no-one would expect you to write every single piece of business possibly available to you, to be an expert and specialist in every single sector, to be able to prioritise all advice needs, services and products to the same extent.
Now, I appreciate that having written that, I’m going to get a number of comments from sole traders, for example, telling me that’s exactly what they do and that it is absolutely possible for them to do all this...and more
At which point I’m going to say that there are only so many hours in the day that one person can work, and that if they are being absolutely honest with themselves, then I suspect they will know they’ve missed out on some business opportunities during their career.
After all, we call them priorities for a reason. Take the last six to 12 months, for instance. A period when I suspect many advisers have felt the need to prioritise the growing number of purchase cases that have presented themselves.
There’s nothing wrong with this, of course. With a full stamp duty holiday deadline in place for the 30th June it was always likely that business would be prioritised towards purchases.
Now we have the partial stamp duty holiday deadline of the 30th September, and while we might not anticipate the same level of purchase business over the course of the next couple of months, there is still likely to be a significant number of purchasers who want to complete by this date, although they might already be past the point of no return if the case is not currently with the conveyancers.
Again, nothing wrong with prioritising those cases. But, what of existing customers? What of those whose special rates have come, or are coming, to an end over the course of those months?
Did you manage to keep those clients happy over the last year? Did you provide the necessary advice and recommendations on the remortgage or product transfer options available to them? Did you manage to look at their existing protection arrangements to see if they were still relevant to their circumstances? What about their GI? What about the conveyancing advice you offer – did they all get this?
I’m going to guess that the answer would probably be yes for some clients, but potentially not all. With purchase business taking the bulk of your time, maybe you didn’t communicate as regularly as you would normally have done with those existing customers? So, maybe that quote is right – you can’t “do it all“, but potentially with a new administrator you could, with a new adviser you could, with a new CRM system you could, with an introducer arrangement to a specialist packager you could, with better communications you could, with more resource and support you could – I could go on.
The point is that we all know the market has been pretty frantic over the last year and the likelihood is we’ll see a slight purchase slowdown but not much, and at the same time there are hundreds of thousands of mortgages coming up for maturity. Advice will be crucial for many – they came to you in the past, why wouldn’t they do so again?
But, it may need some forward planning, some changes, and an acceptance that you can’t do it all to be able to secure all the business available from what is a positive marketplace. Some mortgage clubs are at times criticised by advisers who ask what value they really add, or query why they earn part of the fee created by the broker’s advice and, dare I say, at times I can understand their frustration.
So, perhaps now is the ideal time to test the support you get and where necessary, challenge the value for money delivered, because even when you’re a single adviser business, you don’t and shouldn’t have to operate alone.