One of the best things a Loan Officer can do to improve business is to build and maintain relationships with Real Estate Agents. Mortgage Professional America explained that home buyers are often a Loan Officer's main source of business.1 These can only come when Real Estate Agents know who you are, and when they believe you are a good resource for their clients.
The First Step
The first step in curating these relationships is meeting Real Estate Agents. BiggerPockets advised Loan Officers to attend open houses to do this.2 Search for open houses in your area and stop by. Introduce yourself and open a conversation about how the agent's business is doing. Starting a dialogue about this can help you to make your sales pitch at a later time. Ask if you can set up a time to talk. Be sure to send the agent a note after you leave to let him or her know you are looking forward to the arranged meeting.
Scotsman Guide, a publication for mortgage originators, said it's important that Loan Officers get prepared before making this first step.3 Go over the points you want to make during your first encounter, and then during the initial meeting. Practicing what you will say beforehand will make you seem more confident and knowledgeable.
Be a Resource
When you make contact with a Real Estate Agent, be sure you know how your business can benefit his or her company. To do this, you will have to do some research on their business. Familiarize yourself with the loan programs typically used by their clients. For instance, if they're showing some expensive properties, tell them about a great jumbo loan option you have.
Working together is a great way to build a stronger relationship, plus you are attracting more business by doing so. There are many ways Loan Officers and Real Estate Agents can work together, such as:
- Co-sponsor an open house
- Offer your services to clients as a package
- Create an e-book together that contains marketing language for both businesses
Strengthening a Relationship
Scotsman Guide explained there are some things Loan Officers can do to show Real Estate Agents the benefits of working together. For instance, during the loan origination process, Loan Officers and Real Estate Agents need to stay in close communication to get accurate and timely information to the homebuyer. Real Estate Agents don't like tracking down information for a client, like when an appraisal is finished or a loan is approved. Rather than leaving this to the Real Estate Agent to do, set them up on a notification service triggered by the progression of a loan through the funding milestones. They will appreciate being informed, and they won't be left without an answer when the client inevitably asks about it.
When a Real Estate Agent asks whether a loan can be originated or not, you probably want to say "yes" right away. This isn't always a good idea, especially if the loan isn't likely to get approved. Always be honest and forthcoming to Real Estate Agents. Instead of answering in the affirmative, tell the agent you'll check into the loan's possibility and that you'll be in touch soon. Then, contact the agent as soon as you have your answer. Prompt responses are a good way to strengthen a relationship.
Forming good relationships with Real Estate Agents is one of the best things a Loan Officer can do to boost his or her business. By making a good impression, highlighting how you can benefit the agent and being both reliable and honest, you can increase your business and develop a strong professional relationship that benefits both you and the agent.
1. Mortgage Professional America
3. Scotsman Guide