Firstly… Policy. I cannot tell you how many people come to me, thinking I'm about to shop rates, fees, features and so on for them. The first thing I need to do is find the correct lender for what you are trying to achieve, based on policy issues. Well over half our clients are going to be restricted on policy and who will approve them. Yes we have all the major banks, second tier lenders and so on, but it's a maze out there people!
This is where the horror stories come from (“The bank wouldn't approve me, but they approved my friend - banks are awful!”) you just can't stick a round peg into a square hole. What suits one does not suit another, and due to privacy I can't really explain that without using general policy terms why your friend got approved and you didn’t. Some policies can be stretched at certain banks if you have strengths elsewhere, yet some flat out can't. This is why our fact finder form is five pages long. You are not the sole product of your income. Policy can pertain to employment type, length, income sources, your age, postcode of the property, property type, property zoning, your assets Vs liabilities, Debt servicing ratios, separation agreements, government income types, product type sought and the list just goes on and on.
Until I go through all five pages of our fact finder, I generally feel I have about thirty percent of the picture. So, with policy in mind, what we do is specialize in; approvals, knowledge & credit assessment first and foremost. I vet the credit policy at every lender I know, so if you get through my credit assessment I will get your approval or advocate for it if I believe in it, and I will be heard! I cannot tell you the amount of times people walk into this office every single week declined from one lender, and we have a perfectly achievable solution elsewhere. I cannot explain the time taken out of every single day to make sure every client fits the lender policy. Research, reading, vetting, talking to credit contacts, checking each banks calculations with different variants of the same information, bank development managers is a huge part of our job as brokers for finance for homes and cars. Let’s not forget, policy changes come out weekly… what applied last month, may have changed at your lender this month. You need an expert, not just a good rate.
Secondly… Speed and accountability. Do you want your lender to take a couple of days, or are you willing to accept weeks? What if things go wrong, who is your advocate, who will escalate your issue to higher powers, special contacts, or resolve blockages or miscommunications for you? Does your broker have a premium service agreement from their banks? We do! We hold banks accountable and this can take countless phone calls, emails and online escalations from many angles. Whilst you may be disappointed things take another few days, imagine if you didn't have an advocate, I can assure you, it can take weeks longer without someone holding the bank accountable for you.
For us, we like to action everything immediately and apply countless pressures at every step of the way to ensure response times are fast. We aim to reassure and update you regularly again, a huge part of our day is keeping the lines of communication open. Whether we are updating you, solicitors, accountants, real estate agents or banks, we find this keeps everybody calm and in control.
I'll post another day on why rates may not be the best for you, when fees, policy and features could save you more. It's a complicated world out there in lending, and over the years it gets more and more interesting. Thank you for taking time to learn more about what we do – we really do love advocating for you here at Wilson Financial.