A "family broker": Why do we need one?

by Abel Riototar19 Feb 2019

People don’t need to be reminded of this, but it bears repeating — a mortgage is the single most important financial transaction in a person’s life, Savvy Finance CEO Bill Tsouvalas told MPA, sister publication of NZ Adviser.

According to Tsouvalas, there is nothing more daunting for an individual or a couple than putting their entire future on the line when they invest in a home.

“They may have purchased cars and other assets before, but buying a home is something none of them can afford to get wrong. They want reassurance, they expect professional service, and they need guidance,” he said. “That’s why these people turn to brokers.”

“Brokers are the natural competition of banks. Reputation of the banks has taken a hit recently, with the Royal Commission into misconduct in the banking, financial services and superannuation industry revealing massive impropriety – even claiming the NAB CEO Andrew Thorburn and Chairman Ken Henry as scalps, both responsible for neglecting standards and allowing massive scandals to take place."

For Tsouvalas, brokers, aware of how they can significantly impact a person’s life, should aim to become reliable, like the way families treat their doctor or accountant as their own.

Becoming their own
Any broker wishing to become a “family broker” needs to be authentic; he or she should be curious about customers in a professional capacity, according to Tsouvalas.

He, however, warns that brokers shouldn’t overextend themselves either. Based on what he learned from evolutionary psychologist Robin Dunbar, people can only realistically maintain 150 interrelationships. Any more than that and it gets too complicated. Brokers aiming to maintain meaningful connections with their customers should stay within the given number.

“Whether you’re broking for yourself or a firm, it’s vital to relate to people one-on-one,” Tsouvalas said.

“A kind and caring attitude will give you a steady pipeline of referrals that will perhaps last for life. We’re more than brokers – we’re partners with our customers.”

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