What is your title at Progeny and what does your role entail?
I am a Remortgage Executive. The role is client facing and involves independent management of all aspects of the remortgage process from instruction stage through to completion of the transaction.
I work with clients, mortgage advisers and a variety of lenders to ensure that deals are completed quickly and efficiently to meet the necessary deadlines and desired completion dates.
Whilst I generally deal with high street lenders for individual clients, over the past few years I have managed a number of residential portfolios where company clients have secured mortgages with larger scale banks often over multiple properties. I have acted for a client who has twice refinanced the same portfolio of 27 flats and houses.
As well as dealing with firms remortgages, I also handle Transfer of Equity instructions which involves adding or removing parties from Land Registry titles (and in some cases adding or removing from mortgages). I also help out in the accounts department and assist the conveyancers with work on purchase and sale transactions when required.
How long have you worked in your field?
I joined Watsons Law in 2014 the day before I turned 18! My first role there was as an office junior which involved general office admin and helping out where I could around the office. Of course, Watsons Law has now become a part of Progeny which is very exciting.
Less than a year later a position became available when a Remortgage Executive took maternity leave. I saw that as an opportunity to be trained up internally and gain experience in the conveyancing industry as a fee earner. Six years later and I am still going strong.
Why did you choose this profession?
I completed my first year of sixth form and was just itching to get out of school, into the working world and earning my way! I heard that there was a position for an office junior and law was something that interested me, so I applied and luckily Julian Watson took me on.
Have you always known (ie, since childhood, school) this was the area for you or did this develop over time?
I was never really sure what I wanted to do when I was in school to be honest. I feel I have a lot to learn. Working at Progeny means I can gain an insight into and experience other services. I am very much a ‘people person’ so I knew from the outset that dealing directly with the public was for me.
Tell us a bit about the education and qualifications you need to do your job.
I did well in my GCSE’S and AS Levels but in my own personal experience none of these qualifications have been relevant to be able to do this job. I have learned in the way that I find easiest for myself and that is training on the job and learning by experience. I find that I work best by working practically rather than academically.
In addition to the qualifications, what further skills, experience and attributes do you think make for a good Remortgage Executive?
I think to be a good Remortgage Executive you need to be a good communicator. In this role your clients’ expectations are the main priority. A simple email or phone call with an update to let your client know everything is going smoothly does not go unnoticed.
Relationship management is key. Staying in touch and maintaining good relationships with clients and their advisors is really important. My clients and referrers continue to return to me with repeat business.
You need to have good attention to detail. For example, it is essential that mortgage conditions are complied with. In this job more often than not the lender is also your client so you must be certain that you are acting in their best interest too and making sure that the Land Registry title is good to register their charge.
What other routes through education/experience might people take to reach your role?
Many others get into similar conveyancing roles through CILEX (The Chartered Institute of Legal Executives) and also CLC (Council for Licensed Conveyancers) courses to become a licenced conveyancer. I entered this career path working my way up from a junior which worked for me!
What advice would you give to anyone wishing to follow in your career footsteps?
Firstly, I would say don’t be afraid to ask questions. I find that asking questions has been the best way of me developing my skills over the years. There have often been tasks I have had no idea where to start with and by communicating with my colleagues and leaning on someone for advice, I have picked up so many new skills and am now able to pass this on to colleagues who now need my help.
I would say don’t get too hung up on thinking you need a degree to start out. I came straight from school and have worked my way through training in the office and shadowing my colleagues.
Lastly, be yourself whilst staying professional! Over the years I have formed some great relationships with my colleagues, clients and referrers.
What do you see as the next steps in your career?
At the moment I aim to continue to offer my services to existing and new clients. Moreover, if possible, I would really like to gain insight into the different departments of Progeny.
Any last words of wisdom you’d like to add?
Surround yourself with people that make you happy! Your job is where you spend most of your time and it is essential that you are happy there. I have enjoyed my job mainly as a result of the amazing colleagues I have had around me for the past six and a half years. I really hope to build some great relationships with my new colleagues at Progeny.