Author: Ed Davis, Mortgage Education Instructor
Everyone is sharing, and selling, secrets to success everywhere these days, including the mortgage industry. I’m asked all the time by new loan originators: “What’s the best thing to do first after I get my license? What’s the fastest way to build my business?”
The truth is, there is nothing new here. The best and brightest in the business work in very similar ways… and it all begins with the quality of their relationships.
Of course this means your relationships with your clients, but equally important are the relationships you have with your referral partners, and your internal partners (loan officer assistants, processors, underwriters, etc).
There are a few simple, common threads that I see over and over again when I have the opportunity to work with (and learn from) the best loan originators in the mortgage business; and they’re simple enough to recognize.
Why doesn’t everyone apply these not-so-secret secrets? Well, simple doesn’t necessarily mean easy, does it? It takes discipline and patience to become a master. You have to be ready to play the long game. That means no overnight results, and no quitting before you even get started.
Here are three keys to creating great relationships with your clients:
- Create clear expectations
- Lay out the realistic timeline for their transaction and give them an action plan for their role. For example, what documents are needed and by when. Remind them that the timeline depends on everyone taking action (not just the loan officer).
- Arrange for regular touch points. This could include regular calls on Tuesdays and Fridays during the transaction, whether there is news or not. Mention that you’ll call immediately with anything notable, and they should call whenever they have questions.
- Meet your own expectations. If you say you’re going to call, call. Especially when it’s bad news. Challenges can usually be overcome, if you face them.
- Speak their language
- You know the ads running with the mortgage translator following the home buyers explaining the agent’s comments as she uses industry “jargon,” right? Unfortunately, it’s all too accurate. Maybe that’s why it’s funny… Take the time to listen to your clients and be careful to explain things in plain language.
- Most importantly remember, your clients won’t be ready to listen to you, unless they feel they’ve been heard. Repeat back to them your understanding of their questions, concerns and goals.
- Button up
- Everyone likes to buy, but no one wants to be sold. This is the critical step in making sure you’ve covered all the bases. When you’re finalizing the transaction, and getting ready to close, review with your clients the summary of what you’ve accomplished, together. Remind them of their initial goals, including any challenges faced along the way, and high-five everyone on how everything was overcome.
- Set the expectations for closing, and show up (if you can).
- Ask if there are friends and/or relatives who may need your help. (Don’t be afraid of this… if you’ve done a great job, they expect you to ask.)
These are three simple keys that anyone can implement immediately, but again remember… you’ve got to play the long game here. That means creating a repeatable process for every customer. Consistent activity leads to consistent results, but as I mentioned, consistency implies patience.
Use these three keys as a simple foundation to build on and prune and harvest where you need along the way.
In time, you’ll have more and more clients who rave about your business, and become a reliable, steady source of business: Your SUPER FANS.
Ed Davis possesses two of the most sought-after qualities in a mortgage education instructor – solid mortgage background and extensive training experience. With more than 15 years in the mortgage industry, Ed’s experience includes many years of origination, branch and sales management, and a focus on broader financial planning strategies. These positions put Ed in an ideal situation to prepare new mortgage professionals for successful careers and to inform experienced mortgage professionals of new and changing legislation and developments.