"The equity release sector has also evolved significantly in recent years and can now offer products that have unprecedented levels of flexibility and low lifetime fixed rates."
We caught up with James Young, national account manager at Hodge, discussing increasing competition in the later life lending market and how important the sector is to any adviser looking to grow their business.
FR: What area do you cover?
I cover the whole of the UK, but we also have regional BDM teams to support advisers locally.
FR: If you had one ‘top tip’ for life as a BDM, what would it be?
Know your competitor’s products just as well as your own. I think it’s really important to have as much understanding of all your competitor’s strengths as possible so that you can better position your own lenders USPs.
FR: How do you pass the time on the road - books, podcasts, audiobooks?
Spotify and Prime Music are great - As well as my (questionable) music playlists, there is a lot of stand-up comedy on them which can be a great pick-up after a long or tough day.
I also listen to a lot of podcasts. I particularly like Kermode and Mayo’s Film Review, That Peter Crouch Podcast and Full Disclosure with James O’Brien.
FR: What’s one thing you wish all brokers knew?
Just how competitive and dynamic the later life lending sector has become, and how important this sector of the market will be to any adviser looking how to grow their business over the next decade due to the UK’s aging demographic.
As a specialist later life lender we’re constantly reviewing and updating our underwriting criteria to reflect the different types of incomes and circumstance a client may have when either approaching or in retirement, and we can now underwrite an extremely broad range of incomes and term lengths. The equity release sector has also evolved significantly in recent years and can now offer products that have unprecedented levels of flexibility and low lifetime fixed rates.
FR: A quick email on Monday or a phone call in the afternoons - how can brokers contact you?
Mobile or email is always fine at any time, and I’ll always get back as soon as I can if you have to leave a message.
We also have a fantastic specialist lending support team at the Hodge head office who are also on hand to talk through cases if there’s an urgent enquiry and I’m tied up in a meeting.
FR: And lastly - what’s your favourite place to stop for a coffee when you’re between meetings?
When I’m on the road it’ll usually be a Costa or Café Nero for a double espresso, but I also like taking the opportunity to find a nice independent coffee house or café as you can’t beat a place with a bit of soul and character.