Driven by a desire to help people achieve their property goals, Leon Spadavecchia left a well-paid position in the finance industry to become a mortgage broker 16 years ago.
Since then he has received plenty of accolades, including ranking 54 in last year’s MPA Top 100.
MPA spoke with the Adelaide-based broker about why he made the transition to broking and the importance of perseverance.
The support of his wife saw him thrive
Spadavecchia credits much of his success as a broker to his wife.
“Once upon a time I used to be state manager for Loan Market,” he says. “Part of my role was to grow the team and recruit brokers.”
He says this helped him understand how massive the transition was to a commission-only income.
Despite this, it was a transition he was eager to make.
“I decided that I wanted to become a broker really with a genuine desire to become the good guy and to help people achieve their goals,” he says.
“When I was working in my previous life and making really good money I said to my wife, ‘Guess what? I want to go to commission only – I want to be a mortgage broker’.”
At the time the couple were about to start building a house after having their first child six months prior. While many partners would be hesitant to agree to such an income change under the circumstances, Spadavecchia says his wife gave her blessings.
“I had her support, going from a very highly paid income to zero,” he says.
He says had she not backed him he wouldn’t have made the transition, which is why he credits much of his success as a broker to her.
Perseverance is the key
For new to industry brokers looking to make their mark, Spadavecchia says he has always followed the maxim: never give up.
“We’re always faced with challenges. We’re always faced with that really tough transaction that has been sitting on your desk for three days and you’ve been working it flat out,” he says.
“It would just be easy to give it away, but never give it up. Never give up for the client more than anything. Have belief in yourself and be conscientious.”
He says in the current challenging environment, new brokers should align themselves with mentors who have “seen the good and the bad and the ugly”.
“Be a sponge and understand that there are going to be difficult times and challenges and you need to dig deep to get past that.
“Whether it be hitting a brick wall against a bank or the assessor, whether it be delays or client demands, you need to have a very strong resolve and you definitely need to have the right attitude and have a reason why you are doing this.”