Many financial advisors understand, intellectually, that they could enhance their practice by offering lending solutions to their clients. They’ve heard industry leaders point out they’ll build stronger client relationships and better manage their portfolios against economic downturns if they’re able to work both sides of the balance sheet.
But too many advisors still avoid lending for a variety of reasons. One of the biggest is they simply don’t know where to start. This post addresses that issue: Start with practice management.
How to build lending into your practice management
Find partners and solutions you can trust
You’ll struggle to offer comprehensive credit solutions to your clients if you don’t have trusted partners lined up in advance. When looking for options, consider:
- Will I know if my client is likely to be qualified for the loan before I present the idea to them?
- Can I easily prepare term sheets and other materials before I walk into a client meeting?
- Will we be locked into one specific lender or will we have options?
- Are the loan offerings the right fit for my book of business?
- Can I trust the service quality of the professionals I’ll be working with?
For example, the Envestnet Credit Exchange, powered by ACx technology, generates a broad range of pre-selected credit offers through a curated and dedicated network of lenders. These offers are based on data sourced from Envestnet and its clients to help minimize the risk of decline and accelerate the time to funding. Knowing that you have a tool like the Credit Exchange in your back pocket can give you the confidence to provide credit guidance to both clients and prospects.
Build lending into your meeting prep
You know your clients. When you prepare for annual or quarterly meetings, you think about where they are in life, what their financial goals are, and how current economic conditions play into those plans. As you prepare, you should also be thinking about lending.
Does the client plan to make a large purchase in the near future? What options could you offer to make that purchase without selling assets and disrupting a well-planned investment strategy? If you aren’t sure, what questions could you ask about their lifestyle, family, and plans that could help you to better identify lending opportunities? There is no need to wait for your clients to ask about lending – preparing for it and bringing key information to the meeting will help you capture opportunities and further strengthen your client relationship.
Tell your clients you are their credit advisor
Once you’re set up to offer credit solutions, you want your clients to know about it. Get the word out:
After all, who better? You know your clients’ financial goals more closely than any loan officer at a bank could. Remind your clients that you value them and offer your assistance as a credit resource.
The best way to spread this message is likely through channels that you already use. Add credit messaging to your monthly newsletter or send out a separate email blast. Add a section to your website detailing what financing solutions you offer and could help with. And make sure that materials given to new/potential clients include information about credit support.
Keep an eye out for opportunities
The mark of great advisors is that they help clients do what they need to do but didn’t yet know they could do it. Watch for clients who ask to liquidate securities when that isn’t part of their current financial plan. Are they about to make a large purchase? Could they consider an option such as a securities-backed loan instead? Are they thinking about real estate?
Talk to them about ways you could help them to identify mortgage options. You’ll find that the best way to identify opportunities is also the best way to grow relationships – talk to your clients, ask questions, and listen to the answers! Advisors who make credit core to their practice report that exploring credit needs often provides a line of sight into a client’s total financial portfolio – including held-away assets – that they wouldn’t have otherwise.
Adding lending into your everyday practice management allows you to respond to your clients’ needs proactively and efficiently – helping to build your business and deepen your client relationships. To learn more about how Envestnet equips financial advisors with credit solutions alongside planning, investing, and protection tools, visit https://www.envestnet.com/managing-credit.
The information, analysis, and opinions expressed herein are for general and educational purposes only. Nothing contained in this brochure is intended to constitute legal, tax, accounting, securities, or investment advice, nor an opinion regarding the appropriateness of any investment, nor a solicitation of any type. All investments carry a certain risk, and there is no assurance that an investment will provide positive performance over any period of time. An investor may experience loss of principal. The asset classes and/or investment strategies described may not be suitable for all investors and investors should consult with an investment advisor to determine the appropriate investment strategy. Investment decisions should always be made based on the investor’s specific financial needs and objectives, goals, time horizon and risk tolerance. Past performance is not indicative of future results. This material is not meant as a recommendation or endorsement of any specific security or strategy. Information has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable, however, Envestnet | PMC cannot guarantee the accuracy of the information provided. The information, analysis and opinions expressed herein reflect our judgment as of the date of writing and are subject to change at any time without notice. An individual’s situation may vary; therefore, the information provided above should be relied upon only when coordinated with individual professional advice. Reliance upon any information is at the individual’s sole discretion. Diversification does not guarantee profit or protect against loss in declining markets.
Through its ACx technology, Advisor Credit Exchange, LLC (“ACE”) provides access to lending solutions for advisors’ clients via the Envestnet Platform through Envestnet Asset Management’s affiliate, Envestnet Financial Technologies. Envestnet, Inc. has a financial interest and occupies board of director positions in ACE. Neither ACE nor Envestnet offers any loan products or makes any lending decisions. The funding and administration of all loans is undertaken by separate and unaffiliated financial institutions. This presentation should not be construed as a recommendation or endorsement of any particular product, service, bank or firm.
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