Client communication tip: Try to “reverse” a question


Have you ever had someone throw a difficult question at you?  Here is a tip: Respond to a question with a question.  Otherwise known as a “reverse”.
A reverse is when you return-serve by responding with a question yourself.

This can help you define the situation better, and help you get closere to understanding why they asked the question in the first place.

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Build a business that makes a difference

A good business plan starts with good marketing


“Hey Andrew.  You are going to laugh, but I have now decided to leave my current job and start my own business,” my friend Cas, whom I have known for a few years, tells me.

“Wow, what caused the change of heart?” I asked Cas.

“I have been thinking about what we discussed a while back, and I now feel more confident to go out on my own.  Especially now that I have got some experience in the industry.” Cas says.

Cas asks me, “As a newbie, can you have a look at my business plan?  Is that the first thing I should do?”

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How Mortgage Brokers Can Help Clients Buying Into Strata


Buying into Strata
Buying into Strata carries a different set of risks than buying a traditional stand-alone property. Whether your client is buying an off the plan development or buying into an established community, there are some key questions you should be asking your client. While you are not expected to be an expert in strata, getting your client to review these questions will help them make the right decision and help you cement a long-term relationship.

Buying off the plan?
Buying off the plan carries greater financial risk than buying into an established community. Leaving aside the well publicised issue of capital appreciation, often a first-time strata purchaser is surprised by what it costs to live in a community. When you then consider that the ongoing annual costs of a new community are often not settled for two or even three years it is easy to see why some clients look back and wish they had known what questions to ask before purchase. You can assist your client considering buying an off the plan apartment to buy into an affordable community by getting them to do some simple research.

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Computer says no: robo-advice is growing but we still don’t trust it

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Those who got advice from the online calculator in the study showed a small, but statistically significant, increase in trust towards robo-advice.

Andrew Reeson, CSIRO; Andreas Duenser, CSIRO, and Martin Lochner, University of Tasmania

People are open to receiving financial advice from robots, our studies show, but there might be a way to go to in convincing people to trust them over a human.

We surveyed 138 people about their attitudes to, and preferences for, superannuation advice from a human or a computer. Unsurprisingly, most stated they would prefer to deal with a human across a broad range of financial decisions.

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Who would be a mortgage broker today?



Being a mortgage broker can be a noble calling.  But in today’s topsy-turvy world of rapid change don’t lose your sense of purpose.

The rate of change in the mortgage broking environment today is probably the most turbulent it has ever been.

Criticism, whether ill-informed or mis-directed by self-interest groups, media and regulators, a remuneration review, and lender policy changes all contribute to the confusion and frustrations with being a mortgage broker today.

And I can sympathise if you didn’t leap out of bed today to rush to your desk.

The struggle to get that deal over the line, negotiating with credit assessors who may not be up to speed with their own credit policies, moving goal posts, or simply the grind of the whole process.

And this is where you can rediscover your sense of purpose.  The sense of purpose that got you to start your mortgage broking business in the first place.

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Is Your Branding Catching Your Target Market’s Interest?


Is Your Branding Catching Your Target Market’s Interest?


Regardless of what your business is, you should spend time analyzing who makes up your target market.

This way, you will have a better idea of who you are communicating with and tailor your brand values and marketing message accordingly.  Haphazard branding is a surefire way to lose prospects and customers, rendering your marketing useless.

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What I learnt about how to be a successful mortgage broker


Learning to become a successful mortgage broker


When I first started my business, it was a difficult time.  It was difficult to see how to get leads, referrals and customers.  In fact, starting a mortgage business was one of the most difficult things I have ever done.

How do you propel your business to the next level?  What are the successful brokers doing?  What are they doing that is different and better than you?  What did they do to get to where they are?

Here are some of my tips to help you become successful:

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Adrian Willenberg: What made me want to become a mortgage broker

by Adrian Willenberg, Broker Intelligence – who was profiled by Australian Broker magazine for The Hot Seat.  This was the interview.



Who or what made you want to become a broker?

I wanted to be my own boss and wanted a job with flexibility, at that time my son Alex was only 12 months old.  I didn’t want to work in the corporate world again; slaving away working for someone else all day long was just not appealing anymore.   This job gave me plenty of time to spend with him when he was little.  I was always good with numbers and dealing with people, and the thought of earning an ongoing trail commission (which was all mine to keep!) was too good to pass up.

I spoke to various Mentors and decided to join Masters Broker Group.  The two directors (Andrew Tan and Mario Borg) were incredibly impressive.  In my eyes they were the two best mentors going around, they both have made millions and I wanted to be mentored by the best.

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Don’t be a dinosaur


Don't be a dinosaur


When it comes to mortgage broking, no matter what you do, you cannot stay still.   Change is constant in this industry.

Lender policy changes, product changes, and legislative changes over the last 12 months have been a testament to this.

You either continue to evolve with the times, or the pace of change will over-run your business, and you won’t survive as a mortgage broker for long.

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Technical update: Changes to Victorian property taxes


Changes to Victorian property taxes


When it comes to property and taxes, change is the only certainty.  There are a few major changes coming your way that relate to property in Victoria.  These changes impact both owner occupiers and property investors and therefore you should take a closer look.

It is clear from these changes that the government wants to raise additional tax revenue from property investors, and hand it to first home buyers, as a way of aiding the problem of home ownership for first home buyers.

The major changes in a nutshell are as follows:

  1. Stamp duty abolished for First Home Buyers and FHOG doubled for Regional Victoria
  2. Property transfers between spouses and de facto partners will no longer be exempt from stamp duty
  3. A tax will apply for vacant residential properties (in certain municipalities)
  4. Land tax to be revalued annually

Let’s take a closer look at the changes.

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