A WORD FROM CITI
AS A valuable part of our business, Citi understands the importance of young brokers to the industry and we understand how important it is that we collectively come together to provide young brokers with the support, encouragement and most importantly strong networks to ensure they develop to their full potential. After all, they are the future of our industry and are at the forefront and shape the expectations of our customers.
At Citi, we know the challenges they face well – whether it’s navigating their way through multi-faceted business strategies, optimising digital mediums and leveraging the globality of Australian home loan customers in such an inclusive mortgage market.
Citi provides coaching to young brokers (on an ongoing basis) and new entrants with the aim of delivering the necessary frameworks required to equip young brokers with the tools and knowledge they need in order to excel.
At an industry level, we are proud to be continuing our partnership with The Adviser’s Young Broker of the Year ranking for the third year, as it is a fantastic celebration of such a vibrant group of brokers.
Going into next year, I am very excited about the opportunities for young brokers and the launch of our new investor referral program that will provide brokers with the platform to enable customers to diversify their options into investments, and thus provide a truly customer-centric service.
In a very competitive environment, it is rewarding to see new entrants to the industry overcome the constant challenges to achieve the recognition that these awards deliver, so well done to all the entrants and congratulations to all the winners.
Managing director - head of sales and distribution, Citi Australia
Meet the young guns who are taking the industry by storm in a special report on The Adviser’s Young Broker of the Year 2015…
IN 2015, we welcome 11 new entrants to our list of young achievers. However, being a fresh face in what’s considered an industry made up of a bunch of wise older players is no easy feat and nobody understands this better than last year’s Young Broker of the Year, Eric Cui of Alliance Mortgage Solutions.
Mr Cui took out the accolade 12 months ago and says younger brokers can often get caught up in what’s required of them to achieve a reliable track record.
“You have to learn the mortgages, do the training, attend PD days, meet the clients and do lots of things at the same time, so I think time management is a very important thing for a young broker,” he explains.
Despite this, young brokers have a key point of difference over their older counterparts, revolving largely around their ability to effectively take advantage of new technology platforms in order to generate leads, according to Mr Cui
“The first generation of older brokers will not use the digital marketing very efficiently, so it’s a good opportunity for the young brokers,” he adds.
This year’s report proves that despite their age, the brokers who made the cut are successfully keeping up with, and some even surpassing, the results posted by those with greater years of experience, proving once and for all that young blood is genuine competition and a force to be reckoned with
To see the full ranking, please click here
To be eligible for this year’s Young Broker of the Year rankings, brokers had to be aged 30 years or under as of 1 July 2015. Brokers could either nominate themselves or be nominated by a colleague.
To ensure transparency, broker’s submissions were checked against a third party for validation – primarily an aggregator, BDM or state manager
As in years past, this year’s rankings were weighted to uncover the final 30. A broker’s residential volumes, actual home loans written and “other volumes” (commercial, vehicle and equipment finance, insurances etc.) were all considered.
The broker was initially ranked and then their position was weighted, with 40 per cent for residential volumes, 40 per cent for actual loans written and 20 per cent for “other volumes”
So without further ado, The Adviser would like to congratulate all those who submitted an entry this year and particularly those who made it into the final rankings.
Introducing this year’s top 30…
YOUNG BROKER 1
YOUNG BROKER 2
YOUNG BROKER 3
YOUNG BROKER 4
YOUNG BROKER 5
Q. What do you think is the best part about being a young broker?
I think it’s a fantastic industry to be in, especially when you’re young. You’re used to having a lot of change happening, not only with broking but in everyday life, so I think that works in an advantageous way for young brokers, especially with all the changes to investor lending. I think young people probably have the ability to take it on a bit better.
Q. Have you ever felt hindered by your age during your time as a broker?
Obviously people are going to be a little bit more apprehensive when they see that you’re a little bit younger than the average broker, but once you talk to them and show you’re quite capable of handling their finances and show confidence, it ends up being advantageous to them and they’re quite surprised. Once you’ve dealt with them, it’s not a disadvantage in any way at all.
Q. What about being a female in broking? Have you ever felt as though clients have treated you differently as opposed to if you were a male?
Being a female, I don’t think there are any disadvantages. It definitely is a male dominated industry, but I think that some people prefer to have a female as well, because sometimes the female fills the application and they want to deal with another female rather than a male, and you can build up a different relationship than what a male broker can. I don’t think there needs to be more support for females and I don’t think females should feel there’s inequality. There should definitely be more females in the industry, but the females themselves need to want it.
MR HAWLEY is a man on the move. The 27-year-old is only two years into his broking career and has already made his way to the top half of our list. For his success over 2014-15, he attributes his brokerage, Shore Financial, and its solid referral network along with delivering “top-quality service, always being contactable and giving the clients what they want – clear and stable advice”. “We’re pretty big on trying to keep ourselves well educated, so we manage to get good client referrals and build good rapport pretty quickly,” Mr Hawley adds.
Mr Hawley says the broking industry o ers a huge opportunity for young people as it becomes increasingly technology driven.
“The experience that we have at Shore Financial is that our generation seems a lot hungrier, a lot more willing to chase business than some of the older guys,” he says.“I don’t think there’s any negative around that for the older guys, but I think it’s just simply because when you’re mid-20s, you’re really trying your best to just make a mark on the work and trying to get ahead.
“We probably don’t have as many responsibilities as you do when you get a bit older, so I think that allows you to get your business up and running in a lot shorter timeframe than if you’re a bit older [when] you’ve got a family and have a bit more responsibilities and all the rest.”
Mr Hawley says he loves the feeling of being able to assist clients where the banks cannot.
“They think just because one bank won’t do it, none of the other banks will do it,” he explains.
THIS FORMER personal trainer made the decision to do a complete 180 on his career after an encounter with his childhood coach-turned-broker. “I said ‘Look mate, I’m 21 and people tell me that when you’re 21 you should buy a house, so tell me how to do it’,” Mr De Buelle recounts of the time.
“So he sat me down and he was going through all the numbers and figures and I said ‘This is easy! I can do that!’, being a cocky 21-year old as we all are [at that age]. And he said ‘Alright smartarse, if you want to do it, I’ll give you a job’ and that was it. I started on the Monday.”
Mr De Buelle hasn’t looked back since and says the thing he enjoys most about being a broker is helping people in a different way.
“I thought that rather than help people with their health and lifestyle, I’ll help them with their wealth and lifestyle,” he says.
“There are definitely stressful times and a lot of people get pissed off at you, but you’ve just got to remind yourself about all the times that you have helped people, which is definitely the main thing.
“The other part I love is the flexibility with the job: not so much in the hours that you can work, but what you can do with it. There are very few jobs that you decide where you can work, what hours you want to work, what income you want to make – everything is limitless,” says Mr De Buelle.
As for his goals for the next 12 months, Mr De Buelle says he is aiming to maintain the same level of business he currently has, while training up his first personal associate. His main mentor is American author Napoleon Hill, who he uses as inspiration to achieve these goals.
“I’ve got Napoleon’s tapes that I listen to in the car every day, so every time I’m driving, I always sit there and re-evaluate my goals,’ Mr De Buelle explains. “The thing to achieve goals is that you’ve got to break them down. You can’t just say to yourself ‘Yep, I want to achieve that by the end of the year, I’ll get there’ but if you break it down into a weekly or daily mission, you know you’re making progress.”
Q. What do you think the broking industry is currently like for young people?
I think the broking industry is great for young people to have a start. To build a business from scratch, you need a strong industry which is moving forward and I think mortgage broking is an industry in demand. The percentage of people who are using brokers is going up, so it’s great for young people to get into.
Q. When you were first starting out, how did you successfully generate new clients?
“What I did in the beginning was call up all the real estate agents. I introduced myself and asked them if I could do anything for them. I’m a person who knows about property, so I could show [clients] my experience then the clients [would] refer more clients. You have to study your customers. You don’t know what the customer wants. I try to find out what they need and what they really want so I can find a solution for them.
Q. If you could change anything about the industry, what would it be?
“I want to transform the way people think about brokers because people, when they think about buying a home, they will think about going to the bank. It’s not until the application gets rejected [that] they will think about brokers. They all think that the bank stuff is more professional than the brokers, but it’s actually not… A property is the biggest investment of their lives, so they need holistic advice. I want to build a professional image of the broker and I also want to encourage other brokers to build up their business.
THE YOUNG BROKER OF 2015: JAMES CHATFIELD
Here’s what The Adviser’s Young Broker of the Year 2015 had to say about his success…
Q. Congratulations on being crowned The Adviser’s Young Broker of the Year 2015! What do you attribute your success to over 2014-15?
The business reached a point of organically generating new clients and a high point of repeat business. I dedicate a lot of time to my existing clients to ensure they are monitored and kept up to date with changing market trends. Secondly, the banks’ competitive rate pricing made investing more affordable, creating a higher number of enquiries.
Q. How do you believe the industry is shaping up for young people?
The broking industry – in particular for WA – can be very challenging for any broker, due to rapid changes in our mining sector transitioning from a construction to production phase. The result of this has seen a reduction in investment purchases and a shift towards owner-occupier purchases. A young broker working in this retracting market will be forced to look at alternatives for business solutions.
Another factor that can pose challenges is establishing credibility within generation disparity. A young broker requires superior product knowledge and also must present well, establishing trust and credibility.
Q. You’ve been broking for five years now. What do you think have been the biggest changes in the industry over this period and how did you adapt accordingly?
Firstly, the GFC: seeing a shake-up in policy and procedure across the board highlighting the inefficiencies within the banking industry. This saw a need for a unified credit legislation that generated a new wave of compliance.
Secondly, lending restrictions forced onto ADIs by APRA has seen a slowdown in investment lending. In conjunction with the change in assessment criteria and lending policy, this has placed pressure on clients yet to settle on property.
Changes in compliance force organisations to rethink, rework and redesign their systems and processes to keep up with the ever-changing finance landscape.
Q. The last time you spoke with us, you mentioned your business was doing a bit of financial planning. Is it still a part of your business and if so, how do you effectively manage the two?
Yes, we still offer financial planning – through a partnership with a veteran in the industry, we have been able to effectively manage and develop this division.
Q. You said investors make up the main portion of your business. What are the other segments you generally see?
First home buyers and buyers upgrading their primary place of residence.
Q. What do you enjoy most about being a broker?
Helping my clients reach their financial goals and particularly when I can assist entire families. This is a broker’s biggest reward – enabling people to buy their first home, dream home and/or expand their property portfolio for early retirement and being able to give their children better opportunities.
Q. What is the biggest business goal you have for the next 12 months?
To finalise the set-up of our Queensland office and also look to set up an additional office in Sydney.
To see the full ranking, please click here
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