This month we go behind the scenes and chat with not one but two members of the new Moneybox Mortgage Advice team. Meet Samantha, who is one of our expert Mortgage Advisers and Chloe, one of our Mortgage Case Managers and find out what it’s like to be part of our brand new mortgages team and helping people get the keys to their new homes. 🏡
How did you get into the world of mortgages?
Chloe: I started within the Insurance industry. I loved working alongside clients and thought I would push myself to learn about the mortgage process. I had no idea how the process worked, so I did some extensive research into the industry. I then started as a case manager at a residential brokerage and I had a genuine interest in helping people complete their dream purchases! I progressed to work within buy to let/commercial mortgages and became a team leader, before moving to Moneybox!
Samantha: I started off working for a high street bank in the telephony team in Manchester around 9 years ago. I was mainly dealing with general account enquiries and opening things like current and savings accounts for customers over the phone, but I always had a special interest in mortgages. I loved getting queries through from people looking to start to save for their first homes and it’s such an exciting time when someone has finally managed to build up enough money for a deposit and they are ready to move on to the next steps of buying a house.
At that stage I wasn’t qualified to give advice and I really wanted to learn more, so I looked into how I could develop my knowledge further. The company I worked for sponsored me to do my CeMAP exams and just as I finished studying for them, I managed to secure my first job as a mortgage adviser in London. Since then I have worked for both banks and broker firms and now as an adviser at Moneybox. I’ve loved every second of my time spent in the mortgage world!
What has life been like in the brand new Mortgage Team at Moneybox?
Chloe: My time at Moneybox and being part of the mortgage team has been great! The passion and energy throughout the team has been very high and everyone is very motivated to help our customers on their home-buying journey. Our team is always raising ideas and making suggestions on how we can improve and simplify what can be a confusing process for our app users.
Samantha: It has honestly been the most amazing few months since we launched at the start of the year! Everyone is so excited and really driven to make our mortgage advice service the best possible experience for our customers. The whole team has really come together and we all share our ideas and have a massive input in the way things are done. There is a constant buzz of energy and enthusiasm and everyone goes out of their way to help each other. It’s totally different from anywhere I have ever worked before.
How is working at Moneybox different from a traditional mortgage brokerage?
Chloe: The Moneybox culture is completely different to any other working environments I have experienced. The company’s unique culture promotes an open-minded environment, where all team members’ opinions are heard and valued. Each employee at Moneybox demonstrates the company’s core A.L.O.T values and really has a passion for the Moneybox mission of helping everyone to save and invest for their future.
Samantha: Everything we do here really does have the customer at the heart of it, so if we see a way that we can make their experience better, we are straight on a mission to fix it. I have never worked somewhere before that is so open to honest feedback and works so hard to constantly improve things, and quickly too!
I think it’s important that we are available to our customers when they need us most. We are here in the evenings and on Saturdays and Sundays, and I have found that people really appreciate being able to fit in advice chats around their busy schedules, rather than needing to book time off work to speak with someone in a more traditional 9-5 brokerage.
We have a nice friendly approach too, so it’s not a daunting experience for first time buyers with lots of financial jargon. We are all really approachable and although our chats can be covering a lot of important information, we try to make it a little bit more fun too, so it feels more like a chat with a helpful friend rather than a formal meeting.
How have you found working fully remote and engaging with the wider Moneybox team?
Chloe: The Moneybox way of remote working is very different from the typical ‘office environment’. We have incorporated ‘virtual office days’ so team members feel they are working alongside one another. We also have different group chats (like ‘Tune of the day’ to ‘Come dine with me’) that keep you feeling like you are involved with the wider Moneybox team. Our weekly/monthly meetings help each employee to feel connected to one another and to keep the spirits high (even if you do lose the monthly quiz).
Samantha: Initially I was a little nervous about joining a new team remotely, especially in the midst of the pandemic but there was absolutely no need to worry! Moneybox has been brilliant at keeping us all feeling connected, covering everything from live cook-a-longs, yoga sessions, quizzes and even sending out flowers to welcome me before my first day! We also get fortnightly Deliveroo credit which is a nice treat.
I have managed to meet people from all different parts of the business and get a real insight into the functions of all the different teams, which is so refreshing as it makes you feel really involved from your very first day. Every week we get matched with someone from another area and we block out a 30 minute coffee break. I think it helps that we do everything on video chats too which is great as you have a face to put to a name!
How do you see the Moneybox A.L.O.T values come to life in the mortgage team?
Chloe: The mortgage team demonstrates the A.L.O.T values everyday, this is something I noticed on my first day with the company!
Action (Chloe) – All team members are proactively looking for ways to not only improve the home buying process but to simplify it. The process can be confusing for a first-time buyer and we are wanting to remove the complications and make this easier to understand. Our team definitely has a willingness to help one another, from sharing information daily to helping a team member make a lunch choice from our fortnightly Deliveroo credit!
Learning (Samantha) – we need to make sure our knowledge is second to none, so we are constantly learning. We all regularly engage with lenders to make sure we are up to date with their current policies and also make sure we are aware of any market changes too. As a team we all share any new learnings with each other as well.
Open Minded (Chloe) – The mortgages team is all from different backgrounds and each brings a variety of experience. We are all open to new suggestions for different ways of doing things. We regularly suggest ideas and each team member expands on those ideas or are open minded to taking these on board.
Team (Samantha) – you couldn’t ask for a better and more supportive group of people to work with. Every person you meet will go out of their way to help if you need it, and because everyone is so driven towards the same goal it makes us all really gel together as one strong team.
What advice do you have for someone who is looking to get into mortgages?
Chloe: I would say take the plunge. Do it sooner rather than later. It’s a very rewarding role as you are on the journey with the customer from the start to finish. Research the industry, the company and blogs. You will definitely need to have a willingness to want to make a difference to the customer journey.
Samantha: Go for it! First of all you will need to look into studying for your CeMAP exams, as you need these qualifications to be able to give advice. You can self study for these or there are some great courses you can go on if you prefer more of a classroom environment. Don’t be scared to ask questions and get as much advice as you can from other mortgage advisers you may know too!
It can be a really fast paced environment and there is a lot to learn, and this never changes really, so be prepared to keep learning! It’s such a rewarding job though and nothing beats the feeling of knowing you have helped someone secure their dream house!