My Opinion
Opinion

Mortgage advisers need to address the code

The future business practices for every adviser in New Zealand, whether it mortgages, insurance or investments is going to be determined by the Code Working Group (CWG).

The future business practices for every adviser in New Zealand, whether it mortgages, insurance or investments is going to be determined by the Code Working Group (CWG).

This group has been going around the country tying to seek engagement and feedback from advisers. I went to the session in Tauranga and was surprised at the low turnout. One thing which was made clear multiple times is that the AFAs (investment guys) won't be impacted too much by a new code.

They already have a code and have stepped up to meet it. The story is the total opposite for RFAs. Let me be clear: Your world is going o change big time.

Unfortunately there is little engagement from mortgage and insurance advisers. Officially, fewer than 5% of Registered Financial Advisers attended recent roadshows.

Data provided by the Code secretariat showed there were 805 registrations. Authorised Financial Advisers (AFAs) were 246 of that number, Registered Financial Advisers (RFAs) 267 and QFE advisers 54. There are around 1,800 AFAs and 6,400 RFAs.

This figure is appalling and illustrates the lack of engagement. Some have argued that groups will represent RFAs, but that is hard to believe. On the other hand the CWG made it clear they want grass roots feedback from advisers at the coal face.

If there is one thing I would really encourage is that all mortgage advisers engage in this process. If you don't you won't be able to grizzle about the outcome.