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Keeping it in the family

  • Why broking has a bright future

    It is increasingly critical that borrowers have an adviser to help them find a loan solution that meets their needs

  • Why broking has a bright future

    It is increasingly critical that borrowers have an adviser to help them find a loan solution that meets their needs

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    For Glenn Gibson and Iva Rasic, the mortgage industry is very much a family business. Father Glenn currently serves as Head of Third Party Distribution & Direct Mortgages at ING, and daughter Iva entered the industry as a full-time broker just a year ago.

    Yet both came to the field indirectly. As a bank employee in the early 90s, Glenn enjoyed financial services but had found the traditional loans system too staid and rigid for employees and customers alike.

    “I always liked the service mentality of providing customers choices to go where they want and how they wanted to,” says Glenn. “But in those days in the banks, if a customer didn’t suit your product or policy, you just told them to go away, save more and come back in six months’ time.”

    His interactions with brokers during this time, by contrast, revealed a far more flexible field. Realising he had seen “the future of the industry”, Glenn decided it was time to shift gears in his career and move to third-party financial services, where he could work more closely alongside them.

    His path would in turn influence Iva. Broking, she realised, was a tool that could be used to aid in the financial struggles that many Australians face on a day-to-day basis.

    “No kid grows up and wants to be a mortgage broker,” laughs Iva. “But I saw my parents working in the industry, and I realised that you really can help people.”

    Subsequently, helping has become a philosophy that permeates Iva’s approach to broking. A customer-centric approach is crucial for brokers working today, she stresses. Key to that is availability, often outside of the usual 9-to-5 business hours.

    “I know some brokers will only see clients in their offices and during business hours, but I’m happy to go see them after hours – even at their home if they prefer,” says Iva.

    Glenn reaffirms that this is of key importance for new and existing brokers alike, and that he’s seeing it embraced across the wider industry.

    “In the era of mobile lending brokers, they went out and saw customers all the time,” says Glenn. “Then we went through almost a decade where a lot of people tried to get the customers to come into their office. I think with the change of generation and the “I want service the way I want it” attitude, a lot more brokers are getting back out there.”

    While Iva notes the shifts over the last year have made the industry more difficult for new and existing brokers alike, both father and daughter remain optimistic about the future of the industry.

    “There are challenges and disruption in any industry you enter,” says Iva. “I’m sure people who want to become brokers are going to do some research – they’re going to discover that it’s a bit more difficult than it used to be. If they still want to be a broker, they need to be up for the challenge.”

    As for Glenn, he’s quietly confident that brokers still have plenty to offer to Australians.

    “Nobody wants a loan – what they want is an outcome,” says Glenn. “That might be living close to the beach or getting their kids into the catchment zone for a school, for example. A broker’s strength lies in their ability to focus on and deliver that outcome.”

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    Original Article