Rates and terms rarely differentiate one lender from another in today’s increasingly competitive financial market. What?
Not just any loan officer, however – only those classified as “high performing.” It is these high performing lenders who provide the valuable advice and personalized customer service borrowers need while operating more efficiently than others.
These loan officers have found new technological ways to do their jobs. They have built new habits. They threw away what didn’t work. And it all happened just in time.
The mortgage industry funded $ 3.83 trillion in new volume last year, with 6.9 million existing homes expected to sell in 2021 – the best year for home sales since 2005, according to Zillow. But it’s a very different mortgage market right now than it was in 2005, or even last year.
The current market is expected to contract by 40%. 30-year fixed mortgage rates are expected to reach 4.4% by 2022. Well-funded lenders and financial institutions are moving in to capture their share of the burgeoning US mortgage market. And Millennials and Gen Z buyers – individuals with higher, more demanding, digital-centric expectations for lenders – make up a much larger portion of the homebuying population.
Overall, the competition is about to get very fierce. And it’s the high performing loan officers who can teach us what to do – and not to do – to be successful in the months ahead.
Dos and Don’ts of High Performing Lenders
Habits are what set high performing loan officers apart from others. It’s these habits – or strategies and tactics, or the “to do’s”, if you will – that fuel their continued success.
But just as important as what you need to do to become a high performing lender – perhaps even more important – is what you need to stop or avoid doing.
Here are our top four dos and don’ts, along with four don’ts.
1. Make yourself essential to real estate agents.
Loan officers looking for borrower references from real estate agents can no longer just send agents a rate sheet and buy them lunch. Real estate agents today want a symbiotic relationship with lenders: you send them leads, they’ll send you borrowers looking for a lender.
This is exactly what high performing lenders do, usually in one of two ways: they identify and refer hot leads to real estate partners, and / or they help real estate agents better promote their listings and services.
High performing loan officers, for example, use the data to identify and make initial contact with borrowers most likely to be ready to buy a home. Then, after pre-approving the borrowers for the mortgages, they refer them to the real estate agents they recommend.
High performing loan officers also work alongside real estate agents to help them better promote real estate listings, market their services to buyers / sellers, and capture leads as they arrive. Free tool from Total Expert allows lenders and real estate agents to jointly manage shared leads in one place, track lead activity, co-market to homebuyers using fully compliant materials and property images automatically populated from MLS listings, and post unique property sites on social media using relevant hashtags, among others.
Base a relationship strategy with a real estate agent on old-fashioned breakfasts or vague promises to conscientiously take on mutual clients.
2. Make first contact with, identify and convert leads in a more modern and efficient way.
High performing lenders are turning to the latest tools and technologies to help them do their jobs better, smarter, and faster. By eliminating error-prone manual tasks that consume a ton of time and money, lenders are free to focus on providing more value and a higher level of service to borrowers and real estate partners.
Many high performing loan officers use marketing automation, for example, to build trust, personalize interactions, and provide strategic advice to borrowers at every stage of the loan life cycle. Marketing automation capabilities such as “journeys” and automated tracking help lenders do their jobs in the most operationally efficient way possible. Momentum Loans, for example, generated over $ 20 million in loan financing from a single email in a single month by allowing its loan officers to focus on their highest priority tasks while providing more consistent and personalized communications to borrowers.
What you should not do:
Rely on manual processes that choke workflows and prevent high productivity.
3. Be active and determined on good social media.
In the United States in 2020, people were spending almost 2.5 hours of their time every day on social media.
As all of today’s consumers, including borrowers, increasingly rely on the web for brand and product information, it makes sense that top-performing loan officers are also active. on social networks. But they’re not just active – they know how to do it.
Top performing loan officers, for example, make it a priority to post frequently on the most effective platforms, identified by National Mortgage News as Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram. They typically post about once a day or five times a week – considered by experts to be the most effective posting frequency – and schedule their posts in advance. They make sure to publish articles on topics of interest to the typical home buyer. And they’re using technology to integrate, automate, and streamline it all while making sure they’re complying with industry regulations.
Make social media success depend on your memory and manual tactics.
4. Use the data to prioritize your day.
High performing lenders leverage a rich database of borrower data to ensure they are spending their time profitably every day.
With a unified 360-degree view of data, they can understand the full story behind each prospect. They can build a complete picture of each borrower, so they can deliver timely, personalized communications that resonate. And they can have one-on-one conversations with the prospects identified as having the highest priority – that is, those who best match the business goals of the loan manager and are likely ready to speak with them.
Try to avoid:
Spending time worrying about key actions and / or missing conversations.
The return on investment of the best performing lenders
With their strategic mindset and technology-driven lending approaches, successful LOs consistently deliver superior and superior value not only to borrowers, but to their financial institutions as well.
Productivity can increase by more than 20% with improved sales, marketing and compliance efficiency. In fact, a Forrester study found that, on average, six Total Expert clients increased their loan production per loan officer by 20% in the first year and over 40% in the third year.
Lenders using the guidelines and tools listed above enjoy loan retention rates above 60%, well above the industry standard 18%, due to their lenders’ great ability to proactively identify and identify. specifies customers ready to speak with them.
About Total Expert:
Total Expert is a fintech software company that offers CRM and customer engagement specifically designed for modern financial institutions. The Total Experience Platform unifies data, marketing, sales and compliance solutions to deliver a consistent experience across the customer lifecycle. Total Expert turns customer knowledge into actions to increase loyalty and drive growth. For more information, visit totalexpert.com.