Turning away clients: poll results

MPA’s poll on turning away potential clients reveals that for most brokers, it’s a standard part of the job – but a significant minority will always keep their door open

We asked brokers nationwide a simple question: ‘How often do you turn away clients?’ Of course this has been a pertinent question since broking began, but our recent survey on Australia’s Top 10 Commercial brokers suggested that the top performers are increasingly specialised – and willing to turn down clients who don’t fit their profiles. But what does the wider broking community think?

How often do you turn away potential clients?


Out of a sizeable number of respondents, 28.57% claimed they ‘never turn away potential clients’, whilst 46.43%  turned away clients up to 5% of the time, 21.43% turned away clients up to 20% of the time, and a small number – just 3.57% of respondents – claimed they turned away potential clients more than 27% of the time.

Put simply, a clear majority of respondents, over 70%, turned away clients some of the time. For most of these brokers, this was a very occasional event – they turned away up to one in every twenty clients who walked through their door. It seems that particularly picky brokers, those who turned away up to one in five clients, are a very small number. Of course, what our poll doesn’t tell us is how successful these selective brokers are.

Interestingly, over a quarter of respondents claimed to never turn away a potential client. Whether or not this is true in reality, it represents a certain business mentality. This could equally be driven by financial necessity, or by a belief in helping every customer who walks through the door.
What these results do suggest that turning away clients does form part of most brokers’ day-to-day experience, but that having it as an integral part of the business plan remains a rare phenomenon.

The survey is now closed – thanks to all our respondents for their time. Do these results reflect your everyday experience? Tell us your opinion in the comments section below. Also read our interview with specialist lender Bluestone on why you should never turn away a potential client.