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Professional convergence – the new normal?

At Mortgage Choice, we have long been an avid supporter of diversification.

As a mortgage broker, diversification has not only helped us to future-proof the ongoing profitability of our business, but has also helped us to better meet our customers’ demands and needs.

We know from personal experience that our customers do not want to disclose their personal financial information over and over again to various service providers.

They want the convenience of dealing with one trusted organisation who can meet all of their financial needs.

It is for this reason that Mortgage Choice first decided to integrate financial planning into our offering almost two years ago.


For many years, our customers were asking us to recommend a trusted adviser, so broadening our offering to include financial planning seemed like a very logical step.

Since soft launching the business at the end of 2012, we have managed to build a very unique and new generational financial advice business from the ground up.

Today, our 40 financial advisers work with our mortgage brokers to provide clear and transparent advice that is both affordable and relevant to our customers.

The fact that our brokers and financial advisers work side by side under the one roof has been a key differentiator for us.

While I am the first to admit that there are some mortgage brokers who successfully offer financial advice as well as home loan advice, I firmly believe the two professions are incredibly different and require different skills sets.

Consequently, we believe it is in everyone’s best interests if mortgage brokers and financial advisers operate as specialists under the one roof, rather than each professional trying to wear two hats.

At Mortgage Choice, our specialist advisers and mortgage brokers work closely together in order to deliver our customers the advice they need.

This unwavering commitment to provide our clients with easy access to trusted specialists has allowed the financial planning side of the business to flourish since it was launched. Today, the financial planning side of the business has a national footprint and we are well on track to achieve our goal of 60 advisers by the end of this financial year.

When we launched the business we set ourselves aggressive yet strategic business goals and, thanks to the hard work and ongoing determination of everyone in the business, I remain confident that we will achieve the business goals we set ourselves two years ago.

I also believe the ongoing success of our business has given other brokerages and aggregators pause for thought.

I believe they respect what we have achieved within our business in such a short period of time, and they see increasing merit in professional convergence.

In the last month alone, we have seen Ray White announce its plans to introduce a financial planning business that will complement the broking side of its business – Loan Market. And I don’t think the professional convergence of broking and planning will stop there.

Businesses that currently offer mortgage broking services will look to introduce financial advice and vice versa. Why? Not only are customers calling for convergence, but the two services complement each other perfectly.

Our clients are often making their biggest financial commitment to date and we need to ensure that their assets – including themselves – are adequately protected.

Further, at Mortgage Choice we are determined to provide all of our customers with advice that can not only help put them on the right financial path, but help them achieve their dreams and goals.

It is for this reason that I believe convergence of the two professions will become more commonplace. And, provided that each business diversifies into either mortgage broking or financial planning in a strategic manner, this convergence should result in bottom-line benefits for the business.

Professional convergence – the new normal?
Michael Russell

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