Advisers face tough environment due to Covid

The mortgage industry had to work harder to help people buffeted by economic turmoil to switch their mortgage arrangements, a webinar on product replacement has been told.

Already, that was putting a lot of pressure both on customers and on their financial advisers. 

Pepper Money national sales manager Michelle Sargeant told a Financial Advice webinar said everyone in the industry was experiencing these difficulties.

“When we think of the environment we are in now, with Covid, people are either losing jobs or being employed in new jobs and there is a lot of emotion and disappointment in that."

“People's hours are being reduced, causing a strain on the family in terms of meeting their budgets ….. people are still having babies and getting married and also unfortunately, divorced.”  

Sargeant said all these factors were creating a tense environment in the industry. 

People were being driven by economic hardship to switch mortgage products or adjust existing ones to make monthly or fortnightly payments less of a burden.  And mortgage advisers had a crucial role in helping families through these problems.

To achieve this it was vital that advisers got to know a family to be able to help them get through their troubles. 

“We do need to start smartening our act …. so that we can help provide more solutions for families.” 

Sargeant said dealing with troubles like these often required a lot of sensitivity on the part of the adviser.

“If you have gone through an event in your life …. it can be a tough conversation to have.   You might be embarrassed about what has happened … and some people in the community don't like to talk about situations financially.

“But as a community, we need to encourage people to have these conversations because the only way you can learn is to talk.”

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