Tim Chamberlin has always been a money man but his move to Zing brought more than just financial rewards.
Tim was a money broker in the City until June 2000 when he started a business partnership which eventually turned into him becoming a sole trader in April 2002 as Chamberlin Financial Ltd. Working for himself was hard work – he was the administrator, financial advisor and tea boy!
The economic downturn really hit Tim’s business in 2007. He went from arranging 20 mortgages a month to just two or three.
“I had to take stock and tighten the belt. I streamlined the business and pushed through. I rode out the downturn and things began to improve but a whole raft of new and updated regulations came through on the back of the crash. It meant that my job became more and more onerous.”
Joining the team
“It was at this juncture that a colleague of mine from BNI introduced me to Paul Flavin who owned Miura Financial Solutions Ltd. I thought it was worth chatting to Paul as I might get a few referrals from his business. But Paul told me about how he was structuring his mortgage business with the mortgage advisers concentrating on advising customers whilst an administration team looked after the admin and compliance side.
“This all sounded like music to my ears. If I joined Paul’s team, I could concentrate on what I do best – financial advice. I discussed it with my wife and decided to wind up my own business and I joined Paul in July 2012. Shortly after this it was decided to give the mortgage side of the business its own face.
“I was surprised that Paul included the team in the discussions on the company name. He gave us a shortlist of options and Zing came out on top as something different and fresh. It encapsulated the way we deliver our service that we felt was a fresh approach compared to other providers.”
The difference for our clients
“As mortgage brokers, within five minutes the client decides whether they like you or not. So, the way we do business from the outset, we make sure there is no pressure or cost to our clients. We clearly explain that our unbiased, whole of market advice sets us aside from other brokers.
“Once a client starts searching for a mortgage with us, our Infusionsoft software gives us the tools to keep them well informed of progress. It really helps keeps our clients happy and leads to them referring us to their friends, colleagues and family.
“Our clients also benefit from Zing advisers working as a team. Unlike many financial advisers, we share our expertise for the good of the client rather than worrying about our individual bonuses. Our current team of 12 means that if we come across a case that has a situation we haven’t considered before, we can send an email to the group to get advice for a quick resolution for our client.”
The difference for our advisers
“We have some advisers who join us with an existing client bank and they benefit exactly as I did when I joined in 2012. They have more time to work with clients while our great admin team make sure the process runs smoothly from every angle. We also have advisers who join us with no clients and need leads fed to them. Ian Lloyd and I manage these advisers and build relationships with estate agencies to help the advisers grow a client base. Our work started in Essex but now goes further afield including Kent and the plan is to expand this to UK-wide as Zing develops.
“As the managing director of Zing, Paul ensures and inclusive culture. He regularly takes ideas from the team and considers implementing them for the benefit of the business. Paul works with an award-winning business coach, Lucas Vigilante, on a weekly basis. Paul shares his progress from these meetings with Ian and I and we, in turn, have weekly one-to-one meetings with our team of advisers.
“The results speak for themselves. Prior to joining Zing, I was writing £60,000 of commission from the mortgages I arranged which calculates to a net income of around £30,000 a year. In the year ending 2015, I wrote £197,000 of commission which equates to a nett income of approximately £110,000. Because I’m not restrained by paperwork and compliance issues, my income has exploded and I’m a lot happier. I do what I’m good at and do what I want to do rather than what I used to have to do.”
Making the difference
“It’s not all about making money for myself though, it’s about having pride in what I do and getting a thank you card says it all. And of course, happy customers give us recommendations.
“I help first-time buyers who have been to a bank and given a single restricted option of boring just £100,000. With my knowledge of the products available out there, I can arrange a 95% mortgage or extend the term of mortgage from 25 to 35 years to make monthly payments affordable. The sense of accomplishment they feel when they are standing on their own two feet on the property ladder makes a difference to their lives.
“My experience recently helped an existing client who wanted to remortgage to release funds to extend their property. They automatically went to their existing lender and the bank wouldn’t offer the interest only mortgage they wanted. I approached the same bank just a few days later for the client, knowing the lender’s criteria and the client’s position and got the interest only product they initially requested.
“I’m able to help secure people’s future now by releasing equity from residential property and investing in buy-to-let. They receive a monthly income from the rental and the long-term growth in equity can be added to their pension in retirement.
“Working at Zing has given me the chance to help many more people to achieve their dreams through property ownership whilst offering me a fulfilling career.”