How one broker transformed a word of mouth referral into a golden opportunity for two first home buyers – and a channel of repeat business
Relationship-building is a vital part of broking and it takes a lot of time and e ort to build a network to a point of critical mass. Professional reputation, a strong work ethic and a history of positive results are all vital, but, once in place, word of mouth takes over and the fruits of your labour really start to show.
A local, privately owned real estate office had heard about my service through another real estate agent who I had worked with in the past. They referred a young couple to me, who had been searching for their first property for a year and now that they had found it they didn’t want to lose it.
Their plan was set out: the male applicant worked in construction and planned to renovate the house to add to its value. But there was a bump in the road.
The couple had been declined by their bank because the male applicant had two minor defaults on his credit file related to utility bills carried over from a previous rental property.
He had never received any late payment reminders and was shocked to learn of the defaults, but the couple were taking a proactive approach and liaising with various companies to have them removed. However, the process can take as long as five years, and they didn’t want to risk losing their chance to buy this property.
At this point they were stressed and disheartened and needed a professional to help out with the purchase.
I started to contact lenders that would have an appetite for this deal, without waiting for the defaults to be removed. Deadlines were looming, so the proposed lender would need to have quick turnaround times.
Leveraging the relationships I had built over the years, I turned to BDM Andy Zhao at Bankwest. The response was positive, their turnaround times were good, and it was time to get the ball rolling.
I ordered a valuation up front and submitted the application. The assessor picked up the file the following day and conditionally approved the loan, but that wasn’t the end of the story.
With an LVR of 88%, LMI was required, but the insurers declined the file due to… the utility bill defaults! Luckily we had an advocate on our side, and the assessor at the bank said she was happy to go back and appeal this decision if we could provide more details of the defaults.
I presented the additional information that was required, along with letters to prove no money was outstanding and the defaults were in the process of being removed.
A day later – and still within the original finance period – we were contacted with some good news: the loan had been approved.
Despite trying to reassure them that their case was not a lost cause, the couple had pretty much lost all hope of securing this property, mostly due to the tight deadlines we faced. So when they heard the loan had been approved, they were over the moon, as was the real estate agent.
While this was all in a day’s work for a broker, the service and turnaround had impressed the agent and their client so much that there was also a bonus in this deal for me – the agent said they would use me as their go-to finance specialist for any future clients. This has led to a further two referrals, which each came with its own unique challenges but I was able to secure the finance on both occasions.
Not only was this deal a fantastic opportunity for all parties but I had a really positive experience with Bankwest and the assessor, who went above and beyond to support my clients and overturn the insurer’s original decision.
Now in their first home, the couple have started on the renovations and have told me they will be in touch when it’s time to buy their next property.