Geoff Hall is managing director at Berkeley Alexander
The role of the advisor is changing and this year’s Mortgage Broker Expo demonstrated just how diverse the market has already become. With the mortgage market still depressed and more cases than ever being written directly with lenders, advisors can no longer rely on mortgage sales alone to provide the level of income they need. Those that survive will be those that can successfully diversify their offering.
General insurance products in particular are now taking a prominent role in the advisor’s portfolio of services, and our recent survey amongst UK advisers threw up some interesting insight into what brokers do and don’t want when it comes to GI. 94 percent of brokers value the recurring income GI can provide. Interestingly though most advisors prefer to keep total ownership over the process rather than referring their clients via an introductory service to their GI provider and take the commission. This could be because advisors want to keep their client relationships close to them, but referrals are a viable and income generating alternative brokers should arguably make more use of.
Quote and Buy panels with more than 10 products from a wide range of insurers are what advisors are calling for according to our research because it saves time by removing the need to trawl around the multitude of single product provider sites and still demonstrates to clients that they researched the market on their behalf.
It is important for GI providers to work in partnership with Advisors to ensure that they maintain the level of control required to successfully diversify their offering and grow their insurance book of business in the most cost effective way possible. As our research showed, working with a GI provider that can deliver an online panel with significant breadth and depth of products will certainly go a long way to achieving this.