Arrears Starting to Climb: 5 Strategies to Build Strong Relationships
As a mortgage broker we have a distinct advantage over other credit providers, banks, non-banks and funders. This distinct advantage is our ability to form relationships with all our clients. We are entrusted to manage our clients’ largest and most important transaction; buying a home. Therefore, it’s crucially important that our clients can call on us for advice at any time, whether it be good news or bad.
A recent article indicated that 30-day arrears on mortgages had climbed by 11 percent since January. That figure, although not unexpected, is worrying. Interest rates have risen sharply from record low levels and borrowers have taken out significant mortgages over the last 3 years. That said, all of those mortgages were assessed at around the current number with a buffer implemented taking the actual assessable rate to around 6 percent.
If borrowers are struggling, it’s imperative for brokers to call and offer assistance sooner than later. Great brokers will personally monitor their monthly trail report and identify any clients in arrears. It’s a very simple and effective method of monitoring your client base.
Borrowers often don’t realise that they have help available, and therefore, suffer in silence. To offer assistance during a time of need can be life changing.
Remember if your trail book or client base has a 20 percent arrears rate, that’s a 20 percent reduction in income (trail is no longer paid on accounts in arrears). That’s a significant drop in ongoing revenue that could have been averted if rapid action was taken.
It’s been proven time and time again that the relationship between mortgage brokers and borrowers is one of the strongest in the industry.
Be proactive, be supportive and find a solution. Here is how you can establish a strong relationship with your clients, and maintain that high level of trust:
1) Prioritise your clients over profits.
When a client feels that you have their best interests at heart, then you will start to earn their trust and respect. Ensuring that you make your clients feel like they’re your number 1 priority, in turn your client will trust your expert advise and rely on your assistance in a time of fear.
2) Pay attention to your clients’ needs.
By listening to your clients in times of doubt, you will be able to find a solution that best matches their needs, and communicate with them in a way that effectively conveys why it is the best choice for them. Providing a good service isn’t just suggesting what could work, but is guiding your clients down the right path for their future.
3) Take accountable measures to resolve problems.
Clients want a fast and accurate response. So, in a time where a customer is desperately needing your advice, placing a higher value on flexibility and responsiveness is essential. If you were the customer, would you want a fast response? Definitely! Meeting your client’s expectations means meeting a reasonable timeframe and developing a habit of replying to your clients’ queries in a reasonable matter.
4) Build strong relationships by being transparent.
Advanced transparency leads to good customer outcomes, meaning that you’re meeting your individual customers’ needs and have a thorough understanding of their situation. The best mortgage brokers are not afraid to admit if they do not have the answer to their problems yet. Additionally, if a client recognises your honesty, their trust and respect will follow.
5) Build strong relationships by staying connected.
Your relationship with your clients goes beyond their settlement. As a professional in this highly competitive industry, your business relies on the relationships you’ve built with your clients and your community. Connecting effectively with your clients will pave the way for better interactions with your customers, and further their builds their trust with you to confide in you at times of good and bad.
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