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Financial Advisers | What Do Customers Really Want?

Financial advisers

Financial advisers

 

Life is inherently uncertain. Offering expert financial guidance during a pandemic presents unique challenges for advisers.

What are your clients’ genuine expectations and desires in this evolving landscape? Clients seek expertise, empathy, and reassurance from financial advisers. They deal with unprecedented economic shifts, job insecurities, and health concerns. Thus, advisers’ holistic and compassionate approach is more critical than ever.

Beyond traditional guidance, clients desire personalised strategies. They want financial advisers to address their specific circumstances and anxieties.

Clear communication becomes paramount. Clients value transparent discussions about risk, investment choices, and the overall financial outlook. In this dynamic landscape, your ability to adapt and provide proactive solutions will build trust. It also demonstrates your commitment to supporting clients through these challenging times.

As financial advisers, it is vital to be attuned to the emotional dimensions of your client’s financial concerns. Incorporating these insights into your recommendations will distinguish your services in an uncertain era. The role of financial advisers is pivotal. Providing the expertise and reassurance clients seek during these challenging times is essential.

Get back to basics

In a demanding setting, financial advisers should first step back and prioritise flawlessly executing fundamental tasks. This strategic move mirrors the approach taken in sports when a new coach takes control of a struggling team.

This method is applicable across professions, especially during periods of uncertainty. Mastering the basics makes success in more complex endeavours achievable for financial advisers.

Therefore, advisers must adopt a proactive stance in client interactions. They must understand clients’ present situations and aspirations, especially given the evolving landscape influenced by COVID-19.

Delve into how your professional proficiency can propel clients towards their redefined goals. Embracing a proactive and comprehensive approach will fortify your position as a financial adviser.

Navigating current uncertainties requires positioning yourself as a reliable guide for your clients. This approach will solidify their trust in you during challenging times.

Be confident, but be realistic

The property market may seem resilient, but the financial landscape has changed significantly in recent months. Clients might feel pessimistic about their mortgage prospects. It’s crucial to explain that solutions exist for those who faced furlough, took mortgage payment holidays, or had credit challenges during the pandemic.

Setting Realistic Expectations

However, it’s important to set realistic expectations. In this uncertain climate, lenders are adopting more rigorous underwriting approaches. This could extend the process beyond clients’ expected timelines. Additionally, those with smaller deposits have limited options. Moneyfacts reports fewer than 80 deals at 90% and 95% LTV. This is a stark contrast to the nearly 1,200 available last September.

The Value of Financial Advisers

In such situations, seeking guidance from experienced financial advisers can be invaluable. They specialise in navigating complex financial landscapes. Advisers provide tailored advice to address your unique circumstances. Moreover, they possess insights into the latest market trends and lender requirements. This enhances your chances of securing a mortgage that aligns with your financial goals.

Over-communicate

You are probably already experiencing the frustrations of mortgage applications taking longer to progress—and so are your clients. There are ways in which we can all help the process. At Pepper Money, for example, they have introduced a call to brokers within 48 hours of receiving an application to discuss the case. This approach helps them work more collaboratively with brokers to reduce unnecessary delays.

They have found that communication is the key to easing frustrations, and this is an approach you may want to consider with your clients. Over-communication is better than under-communication, so check in with them regularly, even if it is just an email saying there has been no progress. This will still reassure your clients that you are on top of the situation.

Make the most of technology, but be human.

Technology is important, particularly in the current environment, and tech like video conferencing and messaging apps has helped everybody feel more connected throughout the lockdown. It has also helped people to work more efficiently, and as a broker, you have access to a great range of tools that can help you in your role.

Ryan Brailsford
Ryan Brailsford, Head of Sales at Pepper Money

At Pepper Money, we’ve recently launched several new features on our website, such as a Product Finder tool and Knowledge Centre, which make it easier for brokers to source and place their specialist cases.

But we also know that people seek the advice of a broker precisely because they want to interact with a human. One broker recently wrote an article in the trade press: “Customers want to deal with an adviser with access to great technology who has the sensitivity to manage their feelings and the knowledge to resolve the eclectic mix of challenges which typically arise during the home buying process.”

So, please make the most of technology, but use it to enhance a human connection with your clients rather than replace it.

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Where does Connect fit in?

connect for intermediariesWithin the domain of mortgage networks, Connect plays a pivotal role in propelling the evolution of mortgage expertise throughout its network, with a particular focus on financial advising. Our dedication goes beyond the conventional spectrum of mortgage offerings; we actively advocate for and facilitate the integration of specialised lending solutions.

These unique financial products not only prompt our advisors, who are expert financial advisers, to initiate discussions with their clients about the possibilities within the financial advising landscape but also underscore the significance of possessing in-depth product knowledge and an awareness of eligibility criteria.

Our lender digital learning program achieves this, where active participation enhances expertise and earns Continuous Professional Development (CPD) credits.

In synergy, these initiatives provide top-tier advice and services to their client base by educating our financial advisers, ensuring a comprehensive and well-informed approach to this changing landscape.

Credit: Caroline Mirakian, Head of National Accounts at Pepper Money

 

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