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Career Reinvention Story – From advertising to real estate

Overview of yourself, what triggered the change and how you determined what you wanted to be doing instead

Ian moved to Melbourne from London 11 years ago.  He built a highly successful career in financial accounting working in the advertising industry.  Managing a financial accounting team for an advertising company, while challenging, did not deliver fulfilment to Ian.  His industry was focussing increasingly on compliance and auditing and he felt trapped behind a desk removed from people.  He felt disillusioned with his career and wanted to be self-employed in some capacity.

Ian always had an interest in real estate, especially since moving to Melbourne but felt it was too late to go into real estate.  He had used brokers previously to finance his own property purchase and so it suddenly came to him to become a mortgage broker.  He had used an Aussie broker himself so went along to an Aussie Information Seminar and has never looked back!

Brief overview of previous career

Ian graduated with a Degree in Accounting and Finance however never really wanted to work in the field.  He considers himself lucky to have held financial accounting roles in the advertising industry as it offered some of the vibrancy he was looking for. 

Brief overview of new career

Ian’s new career as a mortgage broker offers many of the elements he has been looking for in a career.  He feels liberated being able to leave his desk and connect with his clients to facilitate their goals and dreams of home ownership and property investment.  Being self employed gives Ian the satisfaction of being master of his own destiny and mortgage broking in particular allows him the flexibility and work / life balance he has been striving to achieve.  One of the most appealing aspects of being a mortgage broker is the having access to 19 lenders.  This enable Ian to be more challenged in his role of finding the best possible solution for his client and it offers a greater intellectual challenge which keeps him on his toes.

Perks, benefits of change

The benefits of this change in career to mortgage broking are many and varied.  The most important benefit for Ian is flexibility in the hours he works.  It is not to say that he does not need to put in the hours but he has flexibility around when he will work, whether he needs to take time to pick children up from school or take a holiday at a time of his choosing.  Being self employed is an enormous benefit for Ian as he gets to enjoy the fruits of his labour and over the medium to longer term reap financial rewards.  Mortgage brokers receive a trail income which is a passive income paid over the life of the loan and as Ian’s business grows the trail income will grow.  The income potential is a benefit that has appealed to Ian and as he sees his client base grow so does his revenue.

How you successfully re-invented – who helped you? did you have to undertake further study etc

In order to become a mortgage broker with Aussie Ian needed to complete a Diploma in Mortgage Lending but this didn’t concern him at all given he had already experience tertiary education.  He also found the Diploma to be quite accommodating to people of different education levels.  He took, and continues to take, whatever assistance is available to him.  He found his Sales Manager to be a source of enormous information and knowledge as well as the representatives of the lenders he dealt with.  He built strong relationships with his Sales Manager and the lenders representatives and would book time in with them for assistance. In addition to this Ian found it was imperative to use his initiative and seek out information, to use guides and policy manuals, read as much as he could and utilise the information available via the lenders’ broker websites.

Any risks / potential obstacles you faced and how you overcame them

There are 2 main risks Ian has identified.  The first is financial in nature where you need to be able to fund yourself for approximately 12 months as you establish your business.  He mitigated this risk by being realistic about his earnings in the first year and putting things in place to be prepared for the challenge.

The other risk is the stress of knowing that your client’s largest financial commitment is in your hands.  Ian found it was very important to be meticulous with his work, choose lenders very carefully, make use of all resources available to him, conduct a lot of research and utilise the knowledge of experienced brokers.  Ian did fell the pressure of having to get things right while he was on a steep learning curve and this is one of the reasons as to why he chose to join Aussie and access the resources available.

Recommendations for someone considering a change into your industry

The recommendations Ian would offer someone considering a career change to mortgage broking are: ensure you have the financial backing for the first 12 months; be prepared for long hard work with little return initially; never hesitate to ask for help; join an organisation which has extensive support in place.

Reinvent Your Career would like to thank Aussie who supplied this article.

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