Marc Barlow: What 17 years of mortgage broking has taught me

The director of Mortgage Broker Melbourne shares his key takeaways from almost two decades in the industry

1. Staying up-to-date with market changes

I’ve chosen to make this the first point because it’s just so important to my business and ensuring success for our clients. I normally start the day by reading through several publications. I tend to find that subscribing to their email list is most convenient, or using mobile applications which combine the RSS feeds of multiple publications into the one is helpful. Feedly is a good one which I frequently use. It is however always good to leaf through the magazines from time to time.

2. Getting high-quality reviews and testimonials online

The only way to get a 5-star review is to actually provide a 5-star service, and it isn’t as easy it sounds. At Mortgage Broker Melbourne we have refined our process over almost two decades to make sure nothing gets missed and the client is kept informed every step of the way. There are so many important junctures in the loan process, and an error at any of those can easily damage your relationship with the client. It sounds scary, although it is actually a great way to do business because we sharpen our tools regularly to make sure we keep delivering that great service. It keeps us in business!

3. Advice for finding lenders

It’s hard to remember differences between all the lenders, so a lot of individual brokers get comfortable with just a few and know them inside out. We are a group of experienced brokers so we use combined knowledge and also a chat app to discuss scenarios to make sure the client gets the best possible choice of options. We regularly find ourselves outside our comfort zone but that is the only way to learn and keep on top of regular changes in product or lender policy. We don’t allow ourselves to get too comfortable.

4. Importance of lifelong clients

Lifelong clients are critical. I have been helping clients into their homes for so long now, I am even doing loans for the kids that were toddlers when I first met Mum and Dad! The key to success is trying even harder when the client comes back to you a second or subsequent time. There is no room for complacency in this very competitive industry.

5. Advice for those looking to start a mortgage broking business

Read books! Each major initiative that has sent Mortgage Broker Melbourne in a different and more successful direction came from reading about other successful businesses and entrepreneurs. There is so much great material out there, and don’t be afraid to start with the classics like’ The E-Myth’ or ‘The Richest Man in Babylon’, although definitely pick up an autobiography of a business person you’d like to emulate.

Marc Barlow has been mortgage broking for almost 2 decades, after prior employment with retail banks in Australia and the UK. Currently a mortgage broker at Mortgage Broker Melbourne based on Collins Street in the Melbourne CBD.