One of Australia’s largest brokerages is adding 35 new franchisees a year as the group continues to grow its national network of mortgage brokers.
Smartline last week inducted Mike Crawford, its 300th franchisee, a huge milestone for the company that has been operating in the third-party channel since 1999.
“I’m very excited to be joining the Smartline family,” Mr Crawford said.
“It’s an incredibly strong brand, with core values that match my own. They are dedicated to providing excellent customer service, which is exactly what I plan to do,” he said.
Mr Crawford, who worked for 27 years as a lender at a major bank, says he wanted to be able to provide clients with many more options than just those offered by his employer.
“You are very limited in terms of what you can offer your clients when you’re aligned to just one lender. I want to be able to really look after my clients by offering them loan options that can meet their unique needs.”
Smartline currently settles around $6 billion in loans each year, arranging mortgages for over 250,000 Australians. The group’s managing director, Chris Acret, said it is an exciting time for brokers as the status quo of banking and lending is shifting.
“With many banks looking to reduce staff and premises to improve their bottom line, borrowing direct through a lender is becoming less feasible and less attractive,” Mr Acret said.
The group said it has been growing at a rate of around 35 new franchisees per year. In addition to providing marketing and IT support, Smartline offers new franchisees additional training and development to help them through the transition from their previous employment.
James Mitchell has over eight years’ experience as a financial reporter and is the editor of Wealth and Wellness at Momentum Media.
He has a sound pedigree to cover the business of mortgages and the converging financial services sector having reported for leading finance titles InvestorDaily, InvestorWeekly, Accountants Daily, ifa, Mortgage Business, Residential Property Manager, Real Estate Business, SMSF Adviser, Smart Property Investment, and The Adviser.
He has also been published in The Daily Telegraph and contributed online to FST Media and Mergermarket, part of the Financial Times Group.
James holds a BA (Hons) in English Literature and an MA in Journalism.
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