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  • Writer's pictureAlastair Hoyne

2023: A View From The Coalface

Undoubtedly, the most pressing challenge all brokers have faced in 2023 was the pace and scope of changes in interest rates and the subsequent product changes prompted by the Bank of England's base rate adjustments. Finding our way through this as a business and on behalf of our clients has required the patience of a saint and the thick skin worthy of a rhino’s backside.   It’s been a constant balancing act.


A photo of Alastair Hoyne, CEO of Finanze Group
Alastair Hoyne, CEO

Dealing with Change

One of the most profound challenges was aligning borrower expectations with the changing market conditions. With criteria and products doing the ‘hokey-cokey.’ clients were often faced with deals which no longer stacked up, and with that came great uncertainty.  We've regularly had to change products and re-submit applications to ensure our clients could continue with their plans. It's required many fraught conversations, countless calls and late-night emails to get the deals done, but we pushed through.

Learning to Dance Addressing client concerns became a priority, and striking a balance between offering competitive solutions and managing client expectations was a constant dance where we as a team learned to boogie.  However, amidst these challenges, we recognised the need for innovation and collaboration, and it’s in this area we’ve excelled this year.

New Ideas

In response to the evolving needs of our clients, Finanze forged ahead, creating new products in partnership with our industry peers. These innovative solutions were designed to cater to emerging needs, providing a lifeline for borrowers grappling with the complexities of the market. This adaptive approach not only positioned us as a forward-thinking player in the industry but also solidified our commitment to offering tailored solutions in the face of uncertainty.  Innovation can take time to bear fruit but for us, we were fortunate to work with several key players who were up for the challenge in a turbulent market.

Rewards

Despite the challenges, 2023 brought with it a series of noteworthy victories for Finanze. One highlight was the recognition we received through various awards and nominations, including the prestigious Bridging and Commercial Top 40 Most Influential Property Professionals. While accolades are a testament to our team's dedication and expertise, it's important to acknowledge them with humility and a sense of responsibility, recognising that there is always room for growth and improvement.  We didn't coast through 2023, we flew – sometimes by the seat of our pants – but we flew all the same. We know many of our colleagues did the same.

Building our Team

In tandem with the accolades, our team expanded, welcoming new specialists who bring fresh perspectives and skills to the table. This growth was instrumental in our ability to navigate the financial landscape and provide enhanced services to our clients. The launch of new divisions underscored our commitment to diversification and staying at the forefront of industry trends.  We changed, we repurposed, and we regrouped to cater to our clients and our team. It has served us well.

Collaboration

As we reflect on the support received from lenders, partners and stakeholders, it's evident that collaboration played a crucial role in overcoming the challenges of 2023. Lenders who demonstrated agility in responding to market shifts and proactively communicated changes facilitated a smoother transition for brokers like us. Effective communication from stakeholders, coupled with a willingness to adapt and innovate, fostered an environment conducive to growth and success.  It’s not always been easy, but it's definitely been worth it.

What Lies Ahead

Looking ahead to 2024, the landscape remains uncertain, and yet, optimism prevails. The lessons learned in 2023 have equipped us with resilience and adaptability, traits that will undoubtedly serve us, our clients and our partners well in the upcoming year. While challenges are inevitable, we approach the future with a sense of confidence, buoyed by the collective strength of the broker market and a client base that is determined to continue to grow its assets and wealth. We move into 2024, with gratitude for the support received, a keen awareness of the evolving landscape, and an unwavering commitment to serving the needs of our clients, whatever comes our way. 

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