MEET DANIEL MCLARDY (JUST DAN IS FINE)
I'm not particularly good at writing about myself because it makes me feel like a bit of a narcissist, if this makes sense, when the truth is I'm just a regular kind of chap living in Edinburgh with my family, trying my best to keep all the plates spinning - just like everyone else. But given that I'm the person who brought Experts 4 Mortgages to life, it makes sense to give you a feel for the kind of person I am, and what gets me out of bed in the morning. So here it goes!
WHO IS DAN MCLARDY?
I'm a middle-aged fellow living in Edinburgh with my wife and 2 young children, who I try to keep up with. I am originally from Suffolk, not so far from London, but as you may have guessed from the name my family line originates in Scotland, arguably the most beautiful country on Earth. For my sins I am an Ipswich Town football supporter, the source of great pain and suffering.
WHY DID I START EXPERTS 4 MORTGAGES?
When I purchased my home in Edinburgh the mortgage advice firm my wife and I went to "did the job", but ultimately the service was below par because it was impersonal. Yes, we did meet and speak to a person initially, but we were soon passed to a "team" to manage our case. From this point it went downhill. Emails went without reply, mistakes started to be made, and gradually we became part of a more anonymous, volume-driven machine. This is not what we expected; my wife and I were taking a very serious step together and we wanted the personal attention we deserved. We wanted a truly personal service where someone knew who we were, what was happening with our mortgage, and what to expect next. In short, we needed a personal mortgage broker, and I started Experts 4 Mortgages because I believed I could do it better.
WHAT IS A PERSONAL MORTGAGE BROKER, AND WHY DO I BELIEVE THIS PROVIDES A SUPERIOR SERVICE?
My conception of a personal broker is one who handles your mortgage from start-to-finish, giving a full advice service and submitting the mortgage application on your behalf, seeing the process through to the time the mortgage completes. If you have any questions or queries you contact your broker direct, who responds promptly with the right information. No one else is involved with your mortgage to muddy the waters - there is a clear, direct relationship and line of responsibility. To me it makes sense that this is the most effective way to deliver the quality, responsive service every client deserves.
WHAT DO I THINK MAKES A GOOD MORTGAGE ADVISER?
First and foremost, a good mortgage adviser understands that advice is about putting his clients first and having their interests at the heart of what he does. In my opinion it's difficult for an adviser to act in this capacity if they have, or are led to have, a sales-driven mentality. A good adviser communicates in a timely and easily understood fashion, and has the patience and empathy required to make sure his clients are comfortable sharing their mortgage journey with him. And finally, perhaps more interestingly, I believe a good adviser knows when not to assist a customer who he feels is seeking to tread the wrong path. Just because someone can get a mortgage, it doesn't mean it's the best outcome for their welfare.
For getting this far! I appreciate it's a bit of a yawn, but I think it's important for the World to know that Experts 4 Mortgages is not a faceless business. I created it, and the buck stops with me.
QUESTIONS I HAVE RECEIVED FROM CLIENTS AND THE PUBLIC
Dan, I've been looking at the Experts 4 Mortgages reviews on the web and it appears that you are the mortgage adviser for the business. Are you a one-man-band?
I am indeed the mortgage adviser for Experts 4 Mortgages, but I am not a one-man-band. Experts 4 Mortgages is a member business of the Stonebridge Group, which is a mortgage network of around 500 advisers. The Stonebridge Group is a significant entity in the mortgage intermediary market, highly regarded by its lender partners for its ethical culture and standards of practice. The group has invested extensively in its people and technology, which allows us as front line advisers to deliver a highly effective whole-of-market mortgage advice service to our clients.
Daniel, when you did our mortgage we thought your service was very good, but don't you use too much tech stuff to call yourself a personal brokerage?
Thank you for your question, Sean. I don't believe that a mortgage adviser has to meet with clients face-to-face to provide the personal service I espouse. Personal service is, saliently, about receiving dedicated attention to your case from beginning to end, by just one adviser who always knows who you are and where you are on your mortgage journey. I agree that a face-to-face meeting is the better experience when getting to know your adviser, but modern technology is clearly making a distance service an attractive option. Video conferencing allows me to hold appointments with clients who would otherwise not be able to attend an office, and I believe the mortgage advice industry will need to embrace modern methods of communication to stay attuned to people's busy, more complex lifestyles.
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