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Why Smartline’s Kapil Nepal chose broking over banking

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    Kapil Nepal left the bank to become a broker about eight years ago and has since gone on to rank in MPA’s Top 100 three times. MPA spoke with the Smartline broker about what attracted him to the industry and how hiring staff helped him strike a better work/life balance.

    Striking the right work/life balance

    Attracted to what it could offer his customers and his career, Nepal jumped the fence to broking in 2012.

    He wanted to set up his own business while expanding what he could offer his clients.

    “I am a service-oriented person. I believe that if you look after the client, the business just knocks on your door.”

    At the time, he thought it would allow him to have a better work/life balance than what he had at the bank, however, he soon found himself working even longer hours.

    This was in part due to his success as a Top 100 broker. But despite being busier, he says the role was much more manageable and offered more flexibility than his previous position.

    “I could control how busy I wanted to be and I could hire staff.”

    Which is exactly what he did – just one year later.

    “As soon as I did that it was so much more manageable and my work and life balance was good as well.”

    He says any successful broker must go through a period of growth as a one-man band and the challenge of hiring their first staff while on a limited income.

    Reaching premium status

    Another common challenge brokers face when starting out is getting loan approvals on time. For Nepal, service levels were very slow at various lenders and he often found himself waiting for hours to hear back from them. After building volume within his business, he reached “premium status” with a couple of banks and was able to achieve quicker turnaround times for his clients.

    A good portion of his clients are first home buyers or migrants who don’t know much about the loan application process, and he has had many memorable lending scenarios over the years.

    He recalls one particular time in which he found himself on a mad dash towards settlement – quite literally.

    It was just a few days before settlement and he had to visit the clients at their workplaces to do the document sign up. He met the husband at his work and then drove him to the wife’s place of employment – a health care facility.

    “I think we spent 10-15 minutes walking within that big compound to find her.”

    This was the final sprint in a marathon that saw him visit the branch, liaise with the BDM and get the loan settled within seven to eight days – half the time it would have normally taken.

    When he is not going the extra mile for his clients, Nepal enjoys travelling, spending time with family and losing himself in a good book.

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    Original Article