The Role of Client Portals

What feels like just a few years ago, most brokers were happy using Word document fact finds, excel spreadsheets for business tracking and piling up paper into big client folders. Alternatively, they were using one of the antiquated mortgage broker CRM systems available at the time.

Then the landscape started to change and not only customer relationship management (CRM) systems became more prominent as they took over from the spreadsheets, but client portals also emerged as fashionable tools for online fact finding.

Yet, client portals can do more than that.

Client experience

At its basic, a portal enables clients to input their information and maybe upload documents, but only allows a one-off input.

At the other end of the scale, other client portals like the one by ClientTree offer access to the portal with the ability to add/edit information and documents, use various calculators, track applications amongst others.

With clients increasingly using their mobile phones, it is important to have the ability to access the information and documents on the client portal via mobiles as well. This, in turn, improves the client experience and satisfaction, which reflects well on the mortgage broker firm.

In our current digital era, mortgage clients expect an online information flow without the need for a printer/scanner and postal service, so having a client portal is becoming imperative.


Client portals can also facilitate efficient communication between clients and their mortgage broker.

With instant notifications when information and/or documents are shared, we are only scratching the surface. More advanced client portals also allow for instant messaging to minimise communication delays between the parties and have a record of conversations for compliance purposes.

Document upload

We have all heard before that sending documents via email is not considered to be a safe method.

However, uploading documents via a client portal is a safe and secure alternative, as discussed in a separate point below.

Sometimes users have to choose a category for their document before uploading it, while other times the users have the ability to create their own folders, rename or move documents and even delete them if they made a mistake.

ClientTree allows a two-way document-sharing facility between mortgage brokers and their clients, so not only clients can upload their documents, but brokers can also share disclosure forms, mortgage offers and other relevant documents with their clients at the click of a button.

In all instances, the main thing is speed, efficiency and security, which aids the customer experience and communication between mortgage brokers and clients.


Some client portals enable clients to see the status of their mortgage application. By providing clients access to their mortgage application status and progress updates, brokers demonstrate transparency and build trust with their clients.

With ClientTree, clients also have access to a portfolio summary, providing them with an overview of their mortgage and insurance information in one place.

It also encourages mortgage brokers to keep their records up to date and accurate, which in turn helps with compliance and management case tracking/reporting.

Integration with a CRM system


Many client portals are integrated with a mortgage broker CRM, such as the ClientTree CRM system, which helps with dataflow and eliminates the need for re-keying data as well as reducing mistakes.

The ClientTree CRM system offers an interactive client portal that allows clients to complete the fact find online securely. The information is then displayed at the broker’s side highlighting the new information for easy review.

Once a broker has made changes or recorded an update to an application, they can then share the update with their client to keep them informed.

Educational tools

Client portals may also incorporate features like educational articles, guides, videos, and FAQs covering various mortgage-related topics such as mortgage types, interest rates, repayment options, and financial industry news.

The ClientTree client portal offers various calculators like a monthly payment calculator, offset calculator, and Stamp Duty Land Tax calculator to help clients make informed decisions.


As mentioned above, security is a top priority for client portals, as they are handling sensitive financial information.

Some portals can be accessed from a website by entering a username or email address and a password, while in other cases, the client can access them through a link that the mortgage broker sends to them.

Client portals are equipped with robust security measures such as data encryption, multi-factor authentication, and secure socket layer (SSL) technology to protect clients’ personal and financial information from unauthorised access or cyber attacks.

Future trends


Going forward, client portals are expected to continue evolving to meet the changing needs and expectations of mortgage clients.

Future trends may include the integration of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) capabilities to provide personalised recommendations, data extract from documents and predictive analytics.

Advancements in biometric ID checks, which are employed by a number of broker firms via 3rd party providers, and voice recognition technology may further enhance the security and user experience of client portals.

Brokers who embrace these technologies and innovations will be better positioned to stay ahead of the competition in the increasingly digital mortgage world.


Most CRM softwares offer a client portal, but the scope of this invaluable tool varies between firms and most do not offer the full range of options discussed above.

By providing clients with convenient access to their mortgage information, facilitating streamlined communication, and promoting transparency, client portals contribute to a more positive client experience and ultimately lead to greater client satisfaction and loyalty.

Think of GenZ, who are using their phone for everything – a client portal optimised for mobile phones is a must-have. However, even older generations are embracing the portal option instead of the old-fashioned print-complete-scan-email solution.

As client expectations continue to evolve in this digital age, client portals, like the one ClientTree CRM offers, will remain essential for mortgage brokers looking to stay ahead of the curve and embrace modern technology.