Mortgage Choice broker brothers offer fresh approach

Young pair connect with clients via social media, technology

Mortgage Choice broker brothers offer fresh approach



Two of the youngest brokers in Mortgage Choice’s national network say the industry could benefit from an injection of younger talent, perspective and skills.

Elijah Barrett (pictured above left), 20, and his brother Lucas Barrett (pictured above right), 23, bought into a Mortgage Choice franchise in the Bayside area in Victoria six months ago after an opportunity opened up to acquire the business.

They are already showing their fresh approach to broking, in their use of social media marketing and the digitisation of loan processes and customer service.

The Mortgage Choice network has a tradition of broker businesses run by families, with more than 45% of franchisees staying with the aggregator for more than 10 years.

Since becoming franchise owners, co-director Elijah Barrett said the two brothers had seen success in generating leads and new business from younger borrowers using social media platforms such as Instagram, and had been improving processes and customer service using digitised forms and automation.

“We’ve managed to successfully establish our small business over the last six months,” Elijah Barrett said. “We’ve been using social media, and a lot of potential clients are Instagramming and DMing us for help. People we went to school with see our account and are now asking how much they can borrow.”

Young brokers lead the next generation

The Barrett brothers are core members of Mortgage Choice’s new broker group, which is being labelled informally as the “next generation”. As well as new brokers, the group includes young loan writers in some of Mortgage Choice’s family-owned franchises helping their businesses evolve.

“We catch up every fortnight and talk about how we can improve our businesses or our parent’s businesses,” Elijah said. “ One thing we talk about a lot at the moment is social media marketing. It is done by a few brokers out there, but we think it could be capitalised on in a bigger way.”

While the brothers pivoted away from university study and traditional careers to enter the industry at a young age after plenty of encouragement from their father Michael Barrett, who has been a Mortgage Choice franchisee for seven years – Elijah said they were clear on wanting to do their own thing differently.

“Lucas and I are hoping to assist Mortgage Choice and mortgage brokers in general by being part of a new wave that brings a young flair, digital knowledge and experience using social media to grow a mortgage business, particularly in a finance industry that consumers can see as dry and boring.”

Understanding first home buyer borrowers

Most of the new enquiries the Barretts receive come from younger first home buyer borrowers who want to know what schemes are available to help them get into the market. They also come across niche scenarios, particularly with clients who are business owners.

“They are asking how much money they need to get into the market, what the First Home Owner Grant is, do they need a 20% deposit to get into the market, what’s the Home Guarantee Scheme, should they look at an investment or owner occupied property? We want them to talk to us first,” Elijah said.

He said that every meeting with a client usually contained some discussion around rising interest rates and property prices. “It’s a concern for them. What we want to do is inform them how banks assess them and at what rate. We tell them the best time to buy is when they are ready.”

Brothers bring skills and passion to the industry

The Barrett brothers said they realise their young age could elicit scepticism from some potential clients. However, the pair added that they did not see it this way and that the younger generation of brokers had a lot to offer.

“We would love to see more young people in this industry as there’s so much young people have the ability to do,” said Elijah. “It’s not that older brokers can’t do these things as well of course, but they may not think about them as often as they haven’t had as much exposure to it.”

“From a client’s point of view, things like the interactive online forms and automatic follow-ups we’ve been using really help. Today’s clients shouldn’t have to chase us for updates – the process  is stressful enough, and I think we can do more to get better outcomes for clients.”

Elijah and Lucas have high hopes that they can be part of a new driving force in mortgage broking and finance.

“Some people enter this industry to end their career, to slow down, but we’re doing it because we love the process and want to work with people who need our help,” Elijah said.

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