Making a difference is a perk at Rescue One Financial – Orange County Register

Rescue One Financial CEO Bradley Smith has built a business helping people get out of debt – and it’s something he can understand because he’s been there.

When he decided to make the switch from his previous career selling mortgages, Smith, 52, and his wife cashed out their retirement savings and scraped together whatever they could to start the new company. They stopped dining out and cut down all other unnecessary spending. Smith carried a dog-eared spreadsheet in his pocket that projected when the endeavor would become profitable.

He knew from the mortgage business – after seeing people refinance their homes every six to eight months because the equity kept on growing – that the bubble would eventually burst and people would need help getting their fiscal house in order.

Bradley Smith, founder and CEO of RescueOne Financial in Irvine on Thursday, October 27, 2022. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

So he launched Rescue One in Irvine in 2010, and he’s since grown the company to about 165 employees, though that number can fluctuate with the economy. He’s clearly doing something right: Rescue One landed in the winners’ circle in the annual Top Workplaces survey, earning the No. 3 spot among mid-size companies.

In a survey, employees said they enjoy helping clients, they feel valued by their bosses and they’re able to make a good living.

The Register talked with Smith about the outlook for his company with a recession predicted, what attracts employees to work for him, and how people can get out of debt and keep it that way. The conversation has been edited for length and clarity.

Q: How does your average customer end up in debt, and how long does it take them to pay it off?

A: So the average program is about 38 months in total. Historically, our average client would come into our program with roughly $35,000 to $37,000 in debt. During the pandemic, that number actually decreased quite a bit. People were spending less, and also they did the right thing in the sense that they went out and paid their debt. So today, I think our average is somewhere around $28,000.

It’s mostly credit card debt. It also is a lot of unsecured personal loans (that aren’t tied to a physical asset like a car). In the last three to five years, we’ve seen a lot more resurgence of the marketplace lender guys, the SoFi’s, the LendingClub. Over time, we’ve seen lenders really willing to work with us. I mean, we’re almost an extended arm of a collection agency, if you will, because we’ve got the ear of the consumer, we’ve put them on a budget, we’ve explained all the pros and cons of this, and they’re putting money aside.

Q: What do you look for in employees, and what kinds of opportunities does Rescue One offer them?

The average rep doesn’t need a really deep background in finance. In many cases, some of our best consultants have come in from other types of industries. And so we’ve got a really good training program and we train them up and everything is very well scripted. The compensation piece of it is a very competitive space, and so in order to really attract some of that top talent, we’ve ratcheted up our compensation numerous times over the last 10 years.

The people that I think do the best have compassion or have been involved in a situation like this before or have been in debt themselves. It’s a good job where you can obviously make a pretty good living. But at the same time, you can go home at night and feel like, ‘we’re doing the right thing and we’re helping people.’

We do some weekly type of sales contests; we do weekly luncheons; we have a taco company that comes out at least two, three times a month. We do some Friday ice cream socials – really just trying to make it a fun working environment. The average age of someone that works here is probably in their upper-20s, low-30s. I’m the grandpa around here.

Q: What might help keep people from getting into trouble with borrowing, and what feedback do you hear from customers who were able to resolve their debt?

A: I think that we definitely need to do a better job of teaching the younger kids. I’ll tell you why. We see a situation where an 18-year-old comes into our office, works at McDonald’s, and they have $80,000 in credit card debt. We’ve set that person up to fail and all because they had a great credit score.

The credit-card companies don’t look at debt-to-income ratios. They don’t ask for a paycheck stub. They just see a 710 FICO and that this person has been able to pay their bills successfully. And that’s a terrible system.

We get a lot of (feedback). A lot of times they’re really grateful for the individual consultant that helped them out and how much patience they had. I think that when they get into it, they’re a little bit skeptical. And once they see that things are moving and things are working and they get their first settlement – we get a lot of great reviews. I’m very, very proud of that, and it’s one of my favorite things.

No. 3 mid-sized company

Rescue One Financial

Founded: 2010

Industry: Debt resolution

Headquarters: Irvine

OC employees: 165


Quote: “It’s a good job where you can obviously make a pretty good living. But at the same time, you can go home at night and feel like, ‘we’re doing the right thing and we’re helping people.’” Bradley Smith, founder/Co-CEO of Rescue One Financial


Read original article here

Denial of responsibility! Bulletin Reporter is an automatic aggregator around the global media. All the content are available free on Internet. We have just arranged it in one platform for educational purpose only. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials on our website, please contact us by email – [email protected] . The content will be deleted within 24 hours.

Leave a comment

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More