Here James Wilson describes a day in the life of a mortgage administrator at Bluechip Financial
What’s involved in being a mortgage administrator
Here at Bluechip, we assign an administrator for each of our Brokers and I personally look after four brokers, Kevin Orchard, Scott Davis, Sarah Irons and Jonathan Bentley. From the minute an application has been placed by the broker, I look after the case and the customer until it completes and the money is released.
I get to know our customers very well, moving house or arranging finance is noted as one of the most stressful times in anybody’s life so it is up to me to make sure that things run as smoothly as possible. I get to know about their family, their hopes and dreams and more importantly understand their stress and concerns. I also make very good friends with Solicitors and Lenders. I need to work in the best way possible for our customers and sometimes this means calling in big favours from other companies involved in the process!
Describe a “normal” day
Whilst no two days are the same I do have some structure, not least of which is putting on the coffee as soon as I arrive in the office.
My next task then is to check my emails to see if anything has come in overnight (this tends to be the most urgent) and deal with that immediately. I’ll then look at the Bluechip diary/task system to check what needs progressing on any particular day. This is my top priority and if nothing else gets done I will make sure that our customer cases are progressing towards the end date and nothing is holding things up.
I will generally start checking through my daily tasks, I would normally work the tasks first like chasing lenders for assessments, offers or general updates as to where they are at that point in time.
This takes up most of the morning and then in the afternoon I would use this time to set up any new applications. At Bluechip we have a very robust process for setting up files! All customer details need to follow our set process and that if, for any reason, one of the other administrators has to pick up the file, they can do this without any disruption to the customer application.
I take between 10 and 20 phone calls a day and make almost the same number of calls out, chasing up cases or arranging surveys and solicitors information.
One of my other tasks is to be the go to person for Lenders’ Business development managers to contact and this usually involves arranging for them to come in and talk to the team.
Tell me about yourself
My background – I have been working in the mortgage market since 2002, I have worked from prime main stream lending to sub-prime and buy to let.
The majority of this was spent at the Nationwide and the Portman so its fair to say that I have seen many changes in the mortgage market over the last sixteen years albeit sheltered under one roof.
As time passed I was looking for a different approach to my career so I put myself through CeMap and once I had passed I explored other options within the industry and so applied for the role at Bluechip where I have been for the last two years.
I am married to Debbie and we have a seven year old daughter called Darcy I think its fair to say that outside of work I have also taken up the role of chauffeur of late.
My hobbies include a passion for live music and my taste is very varied from the Chemical Brothers to The Clash, to name a couple. I also enjoy horse riding although as I’ve got older in years it always seems further to fall, so settle for swimming mainly.
What’s the most important thing you do on a day by day basis
What gives you the most satisfaction
Well it has to be when a case completes, especially when it’s a first-time buyer. Furthermore, if we a have had a difficult application, the offer release can equally be as satisfying.
What the most frustrating part of your job
Knowing how important the application is to the borrower with whom we have a relationship but trying to explain this to Lenders, Solicitors and other third parties.
What’s good/bad about working for Bluechip
Good and bad is a bit on the direct side.
I’ll start with the slight negative (stone in the shoe) in that having worked for a corporate for so long it was always easier when you return from a break and pick straight back up. A smaller company can take a few days to get back up to speed with matters.
Also, my flat looks over my old company, so the 6 mile drive can be difficult to swallow on cold damp mornings, but gravity takes over.
The positives, which massively outweigh the negatives, are predominantly what I have learnt over the last two years especially in relation to the commercial aspect and the range of specialist lenders at hand. My knowledge was quite sheltered, so being at Bluechip has opened my eyes to different scenarios and the market as a whole.
The client relationships that I have been a party to over the last two years and continue to play a key part in are a major positive. I hope these will continue, its always great to get a repeat customer.
At Bluechip I do also feel like a person and not a number as I would have done previously.
The role has it challenges as do all, but remember every day is a new day and the good will always outweigh the bad and the office is quite nice too.
Dam, I used the good and the bad!
Where do you see yourself in five years
I try not look further than six months, its impossible in this day and age.
In five years’ time I will look in a mirror.
How many clients do you look after at any one time
Currently 96, however this is subject to change over the course of the year, well week-to-week in fact.
Tell us a secret about the Mortgage Brokers
Sounds awful, but nothing to share really. Although rumour has it Scott Davis collects thimbles, Kevin Orchard has a love for painting by numbers and Nick Roberts enjoys making chutneys.
For the record, this is a joke, but in my eyes paints a very amusing picture.
Mortgage deals may not be available and lending is subject to individual circumstances and status.
A MORTGAGE IS A LOAN SECURED AGAINST YOUR HOME OR PROPERTY. YOUR HOME OR PROPERTY MAY BE REPOSSESSED IF YOU DO NOT KEEP UP REPAYMENTS ON YOUR MORTGAGE OR ANY OTHER DEBT SECURED ON IT.
The Financial Conduct Authority does not regulate most forms of buy to let mortgage.