At Braemar Finance, our clients are more than just a credit score and we base our lending decisions on the overall health and plans for a business. The human component of our business is core to our success – every stage in the lending decision-making process involves a member of our team.
We spoke with Ed Dhenin, one of our Area Sales Managers, to explain more about the application process…
Typically, new enquiries come either from new or existing clients contacting us directly, from introducers such as a customer’s accountant or from the many equipment supply companies we have a working relationship with.
Existing customers tend to email or call me directly because I will remain their contact throughout their time with us.
In the early stages, most communication is conducted by email or phone calls, or a mix of the two, however I’m also happy to meet clients face-to-face if that’s their preference. We are very flexible and adapt to clients’ needs – we understand they’re busy during working hours, and I’m happy to speak or pick up messages and texts at a time that suits them.
When I receive an enquiry, I’ll listen to what my client is looking to achieve and then I’ll provide my recommendation on the best finance solution for their needs, whether that be Hire Purchase, Lease or Loan.
Something to note is we aren’t afraid of tailor-made deals – it’s what sets us apart. If the client’s request is unusual, I talk it through with them before we put an application together to determine if they want to proceed, or maybe work it in a different way.
At this stage I look for the client to give me information to support their application. Understandably and given the tough trading conditions that Covid has brought, some clients have been known to withhold what they feel could be perceived as negative information, thinking it will lead to their application being declined. This is not the case in Braemar Finance, because we make decisions based on the overall health and future plans for the business.
Knowing everything up front means we can address any queries and explain the situation to our in-house team of underwriters, helping them to reach the right decision for the client and Braemar Finance.
A recent example involved a client’s accountant who had contacted me because they were late filing shareholder information in 2019, which showed on the client’s credit file. The accountant accepted this was his oversight, although in reality it’s a very minor issue. However, this had caused a vehicle funder to decline the client’s finance application because the automated system they used picked this up. In our application we explained what had happened and it was approved within hours.
Once we are set on a plan, I will advise on the information I need and, once received, I will submit the proposal to the underwriters. If there are any questions from the underwriters at this stage, I will then feed this back to the client, obtaining answers to allow a speedy decision to be made.
A decision is then reached and if approved (which 9 out of 10 applications are) I let the client know, after which the documentation is raised for signing and the payout arranged.
I hope I’ve been able to show that not only is the application process straightforward, but that real people are responsible for making the decisions.