Keeping in Touch to Keep your Mortgage Customers

How an open line of communication can improve your mortgage business

Chances are, we all already know how difficult it can be to convert a simple lead into a loan.  Additionally, after that lead has been converted, it can be even tougher to use it in order to grow your business.  The easiest way that we suggest you do this is by establishing an effectively line of communication between you and each of your customers.  You can do this by establishing a talking point early on in your relationship with every customer.  

We probably all already know that one of the most frustrating aspects of the mortgage business is is that borrowers are often forced to go days or even weeks without hearing any updates about the status of their loan. That’s why you should take it upon yourself to make sure that all parties involved are consistently kept up to date.  This will make you appear more trustworthy, honest, and transparent, and in turn, keep your customers satisfied.  Even further, it can quickly spread your reputation as a trustworthy and helpful loan officer, and increase your customer base.

An open line of communication is equally important to both first time home buyers and refinance customers alike.  Whether you use the medium of phone calls, text messages, emails, or social media, is completely up to you.  It is easier to do so through email or social media, but it’s been proven that phone calls have much effective results.  There’s no true substitute for real human interaction.  

Your main goal in keeping an open line of communication should be to contact your customers before they feel the need to contact you.  In other words, be proactive about making sure your borrowers are in the loop at all times.  Chances are you will be making quite a few personal phone calls throughout each individual loan process.

You should truly dedicate the majority of one day each week to make such calls, and update all parties involved in a loan such as borrowers, real estate agents, escrow officers, title reps, agent assistants, transaction coordinators and insurance agents. However, if there is an important development with a particular loan, you should update everyone as soon as possible.  

Make it a point to ask your customers for referrals whether you are calling, texting, or emailing them. Your customers and especially first time buyers, are very likely to tell their friends and family that they are purchasing a new home.   This can quickly lead to a discussion about mortgages and solidify your name as a trusted loan officer. Similarly, refinance customers can tell their family and friends about how you are helping them get a lower rate on their loan.  Either way, your customers are some of the best free advertising you’ll ever get.  

The loan process is one of the most stressful and important ones involved with purchasing a home. That’s why it is so helpful that you keep everyone in the loop.  Sellers will appreciate that they can now update their clients and buyers can rest easy knowing that you are in control of the process.  In short, it makes everything a lot easier for everyone involved.

Borrowers


The most important line of communication for you to keep open is obviously between yourself and your borrowers. Take the proper steps to keep their stress levels at a minimum.  Keep them up to date about the status of their loans.   They could have chosen from any number of mortgage companies and originators, after all, so you want to leave no doubt in their minds that you were the best option for them.

When you are updating your borrowers on the status of their loans, don’t be afraid to ask them for referrals.  Make sure you let them know how glad you are to see them moving into a new home.  Be genuine about your pleasant experience working with them After doing this, ask if they know of anyone interested in buying a home or refinancing, and stress that you also are excited about the opportunity to help them in their quest.  You can even mention their real estate agent by name, which will show that you are completely involved in the process.

Take the time with each call to build trust with your borrowers and affiliates. If you are a new originator, or you are looking to increase your existing customer base, simply adding this step to your customer-service process will put you in the position to vet the professionals you wish to work with. For those originators who are lucky enough to have an assistant, this task can be added to their job function. Referral sources may respond better when speaking to you versus your assistant, but you must decide if that outweighs the benefit of having more time available to generate new loans.

Real estate agents


Of course, when you contact real estate agents, it’s fairly common practice to ask for business.  But how do you stand out from all the other loan officers they work wit?   You can come up with something better than, “Do you know anyone who is looking to buy a house?”  Get creative and let your personality shine through!  Also, don’t forget to always use first names!  You want to be memorable.  By standing out from the crowd, you’ll make real estate agents want to send their clients your way for your services.

On option is to offer to collaborate with a real estate agent on an open house.  You can (with their approval) create a flyer that describes the various mortgage plans you can offer.  Once again, the key here is being proactive.

Additionally, you can advertise yourself as a specialist in loans for specific groups, whether it be veterans, first time home buyers, or any other target group. This will make you appear as a professional who is focused on a particular demographic.  You can also collaborate with real estate agents by asking them to send any of their previous customers who may be looking to refinance your way.  If you develop a solid enough relationship, this can turn into a steady stream of business.

Similarly, you can ask the agents to let these same customers know about your app or website, where they also can get detailed mortgage and pre-approval information.

Lastly, you should ask if you can send the agents some of your business cards, which can then be passed along to potential homebuyers who have not yet been pre-approved. This can earn you the opportunity to present those would-be borrowers with several loan options that can fit within their budgets.  Furthermore, it will make you appear more organized and again, trustworthy.


More referral partners


Escrow officers, title reps, agent assistants and transaction coordinators also present a opportunities for you to seek referrals.  They work in the business as well and can potentiallly be just as valuable.

When speaking to them, ask them to pass your name along to anyone who might be looking to work with a loan officer.  Conversely, offer to spread their names to real estate agents.  It’s important that everyone ones.  

Insurance agents can also be extremely valuable sources of referrals.  They often have great relationships with their clients, and by keeping them up to date on a loan’s progress, they will mention your great customer service and communication, which will strengthen your relationship with your borrowers. The mortgage business is a lot about spreading your personal reputation.  The more your name is associated with trustworthiness, helpfulness, and ultimately, closed loans, the more business you’ll likely get.  

Increasing your availability during the loan process will boost your number of leads and closed loans while building strong relationships. Eventually, when anyone you have contacted thinks of a home loan, your name should be the first to come to mind. You cannot control market conditions, but you can control your communication and customer service.  Consider how you can open a line of communication with each and every loan.  Most importantly, think about how you can best serve your borrowers.  

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