Brokers keen on diversity
The research questioned nearly 400 mortgage intermediaries (including IFAs; residential mortgage brokers; secured loan brokers; and commercial finance specialists) and the findings show that 84 per cent of all respondents intend to write more commercial mortgage business in 2006, with 80 per cent planning to expand the range of products they offer to their clients.
Commercial First’s sales and marketing director, Stephen Johnson said: “It is clear that focusing upon commercial mortgages is being viewed as a viable way for mortgage intermediaries of all kinds to diversify successfully. Our own approach to commercial mortgage lending has been to simplify the products and process, with all rates, fees and charges being absolutely transparent to the intermediary and end customer. This has had the effect of boosting commercial mortgage business via intermediaries, and our current research shows that there is still a lot of headroom in the market for expansion.
“There are a number of routes to commercial mortgage lenders, with the simplest step being to refer commercial mortgage leads onto a specialist partner for processing – so there is no bar to any mortgage intermediary starting to diversify into the commercial sector.”
The research also revealed that the majority of intermediaries have a significant number of existing customers that are self-employed or run their own small business, with 70 per cent of respondents having more than a quarter of their customers falling into this category and 30 per cent having a customer base of more than 50 per cent self-employed/small business owners.
Stephen Johnson concluded: “Obtaining new clients is becoming increasingly expensive, and it makes business sense to ensure you are maximising the sales potential of any current client database. If any intermediary needs advice on how to deliver the commercial mortgage message to their clients, our marketing department would be delighted to talk through the options with them.”