Most Mortgage Brokers are individual businesses or small businesses made up of a few people. This fact makes reputation far more important than it does for a company. A company with a bad reputation can fire staff and tell clients they are different now. An individual can’t do that so they always have to put their best foot forward.
I think industry regulators sometimes perceive the individualism of the Broking industry as a problem, but I see it as of benefit to the consumer. It makes personal accountability and individual responsibility to clients central to the long term viability of the business, which is not as much the case in a large company environment. There is no faceless company to hide behind when the face of the company is you.
This is another of the reasons why I recommend that Brokers market their services in their own names, as opposed to under a company name. It is a better foundation for building and maintaining trust with the public.
These principles are why businesses like eBay, Uber and Airbnb thrive. Because direct interaction and the ability to review the direct person you are dealing with creates personal accountability and makes people behave better. With Uber, if a driver doesn’t look after their passengers they get bad ratings and can be kicked out. Similarly, if a passenger is abusive to a driver they are also rated and will find they are off the system. This co-rating system provides a safer environment for both the drivers and passengers beyond any regulatory system.
When eBay first started, the concern was that buyers would pay but not receive their goods, or they would be sent defective items or less than they had paid for. In practice, though, the rating system of EBay requires people to act responsibly because people will stop transacting with sellers who have bad ratings.
There will always be people who try and take advantage of others when there is money to be made, even if they passed all the hurdles to entry into an industry and started with a perfectly clear record. You can’t stop people stealing or lying, but you can create a self-regulating system that quickly identifies and ejects those people. I believe the Mortgage Broking industry largely fits the bill.