10 Actions For Every Mortgage Adviser Right Now

  1. Only focus on the things you can influence and change, so forget about saving the world or changing society – think tactical. Five areas to focus your mind. Your loved ones, feeling healthy and protected, making enough money to pay the bills, preserving your base, i.e. your home and keeping your mind healthy and occupied.
  2. The cashflow preservation society rules. Take a snapshot of your cashflow situation where your money is going, your bills and outgoings over the next few months. If you run a small or medium-sized business – cash is king right now. Research what you can do to preserve some money. Government incentives, tax postponement, VAT postponement, furloughing. Cut out Sky Sports and unnecessary costs. Secure your income streams as far as you can.
  3. Ring fence your clients and customers. Reach out to them to see how you can help in their current situation. Leave it at that. Most will be thankful; some will take you up on the offer; most will wonder how you can help so be prepared to have an answer. Covert them, so they don’t go anywhere else.
  4. With clients and customers, do what you can to eliminate all risk they may feel when doing business with you. Risk is the most significant issue when heading into an economic downturn. Give powerful guarantees.
  5. Diversify more than you’ve ever done before. Focus on your core offering and think of ways that you can add value to your clients. Mortgage advisers should rethink their reason to be. You help clients in all aspects of property purchase and financing. You protect them in case things go wrong; you tidy up the legal and financial affairs of owning property, you maximise their borrowing capability. So think trusts, protection, life assurance, fire insurance, Power’s of Attorney, Wills, debt management, refinancing, second charges, equity release, shared ownership. Diversify away from just proc fees.
  6. Keep a close eye on how the mortgage world is coping and evolving. Things are changing. You won’t see the same lenders on your sourcing system soon; other lenders will appear. New competition for your services will appear from nowhere in the next few months. Entrepreneurs are strangely active during an economic downturn. What was expensive in boom times, becomes cheaper, so it’s a good time to expand and move into new markets. If you don’t, others sure will.
  7. Rethink where you will operate from moving forward. Do you need an office, I mean really? Virtual is the new reality, and your customers will be moving on this too. Don’t be a dinosaur.
  8. Accelerate your ability to prospect for business. It won’t land on a plate anymore; you’ll need to seek it. That means getting skilled at personal marketing. Pick up on Facebook advertising, lead purchase, referrals, partnerships, and so on. Tighten up your referral management and lead generation systems. Get serious with a CRM system at long last – these little gems can earn you plenty of business. They don’t have to be costly. Nimble is $18 per month; Capsule is just £10 per month. Don’t rely on memory; use technology to generate new leads.
  9. Think about your business model along the lines of competition for your services from humans and technology, i.e. AI. Is it a necessary purchase from clients, or can it drop down the list? Young first-time buyers might put house purchase further down their priority lost now that their careers need more attention. Can you pivot into becoming an IFA who specialises in the latter life marketplace? Very little competition there but a helluva lot of work required on your part to get there. There’s plenty of equity release advisers but very few qualified to help the latter life client with all their needs. That’s worth paying for.
  10. Set goals, of course, but keep them flexible. Now is the time to have tactics – everyday actions that help you through these changing times, not long-winded strategies.

And I didn’t mention the word recession once. But we’re already there technically and anecdotally. Plan and act differently; the world is and has changed.

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