Indeed, we are already seeing the growing importance of application programming interfaces (APIs) combined with greater automation of processes. What this will do is to give advisers the gift of time, so the question is what will advisers do with it?
One of the opportunities for brokers is to look at all aspects of the family chain. This has been a big obstacle in the past, because for years brokers have found that there’s just not enough hours in the day to do an all-round job for the entire family – not just that individual customer.
The gift of time means that when a broker is speaking to a customer, it will become increasingly easier to be able to talk to that customer about their wider circumstances, outlook and ambitions.
Time to talk about family ambition
There will be more time to ask about their children’s future plans and whether they need financial advice along the way? All of this is a good opportunity to lay down a marker for a new future customer relationship.
It could also open up conversations about the lender innovations taking place that customers are possibly oblivious to, such as family gifted deposits, etc.
It will present an opportunity for the broker to demonstrate their expertise, helping to educate not just the immediate client, but also the wider family. The chances are that regardless of the customer’s individual circumstances the broker will be able to find a solution.
What we’re seeing is lenders finding solutions to support both ends of the spectrum with innovative new products. This includes family-linked mortgages to assist with inter-generational lending. And we expect to see this product innovation becoming standard across the mortgage industry moving forward.
No wonder that specialist lending is such a hot topic; whether this is equity release, credit impaired and so on.
Whatever form it takes, the bottom line is that each borrower needs more help to get where they need to within the lending space. So with greater lender innovation, my belief is that these solutions will be delivered.
As technology improvements take place and the advice process becomes more efficient, it will be important for brokers to utilise the gift of time.
Key to this will be for brokers to understand what their wider business plan is for customers’ family and friends.
There will be some brokers who already do this, of course, but it will still be a healthy exercise for all firms to think about what the gift of time really means for their business and their clients in the future.
It’s about each broker’s mindset, along with the support that mortgage clubs and networks can provide to help.
By working together and maximising the opportunities ahead of us, we will turn the gift of time into good outcomes for more customers and incremental income for firms.