Developing great habits during the earliest stages of your broker career is crucial to establishing a successful future in the real estate industry. Our professional environment can be so fast paced that creating an instinctual routine that makes dealing with clients and closing loans easier is extremely valuable.
Success in any field requires the adoption of positive working habits – being a mortgage broker is no different. While there are many factors that separate the best brokers from the rest, you can improve your chances of joining them by adopting these four valuable traits.
Finding a great mortgage broker is one of the most critical steps for prospective buyers looking to purchase a new home. Unfortunately, it can be hard for homebuyers to determine whether the lender they are working with is a good or bad pick until they’ve gotten to a point where it’s hard to turn back and reevaluate. That’s why you need to build trust and establish credibility early on, so that clients feel comfortable with you from the beginning of the process.
So what can you, as a mortgage broker, do to reassure your clients that you’re a safe bet? Thanks to expert insight from AIME sponsor RCN Capital, we will help you by sharing 7 habits to make you a highly successful broker.
1. Listen And Take Notes
Forming a note-taking habit during discussions can go far in alleviating confidence issues and industry knowledge gaps in early conversations. Lender guidelines can be overwhelming, and clients will come to you with varying personal stories.
Take notes! This will speed up deal scenario conversations because you will be better prepared in answering questions on both sides of the deal. Serious mortgage brokers are constantly learning and taking note of new industry trends, expanding their knowledge and improving their skills. Boost your understanding of the finance world and economy, of taxes, appraisals and alternative lending.
2. Stay Organized
This may be the most obvious habit suggestion on our list but staying organized is critical as your business grows. One of the main pain points we’ve seen when interacting with brokers is deal scenario information being mixed up with other deals. Lasting loan officers use their CRMs, build a database and regularly clean it up. If your list is so big you can’t do this yourself, then use a third party list cleaning and maintenance company to keep it fresh and compliant.
Clients may submit multiple properties and making sure you’re relaying the correct information is a major factor in moving a deal along quickly. The more organized and efficient your CRM software is will ensure you are prepared to operate in a nimble fashion.
3. Become An Expert In Your Local Market
We understand how important it is to make a profit as quickly as possible, especially if brokering has become your main income stream. However, be wary of taking on too many areas outside of your comfort zone!
Dedicate time to understanding your market and becoming an expert advisor to your clients. Once you have mastered one area, add in another. Start small and use the goal of growing your business as a motivator.
4. Being Proactive vs. Reactive
One of the fastest ways to advance a deal to closing is being proactive instead of reactive. Do not wait to be asked but instead have a list of questions for your client ready.
If you are unsure of what to ask, talk to a lender about what specifics they would need to provide estimated terms. Do not wait for information flow but instead be the catalyst for progressing your clients’ interests.
5. Develop A Relationship With Your Lender
Connecting at trade shows like Fuse 2021, attending webinars or viewing past tutorials on Youtube, checking for guideline changes on AIME’s lender updates page , and taking advantage of available resources are all great ways of building a relationship with a lender. Repeatedly using the same lender will progress a broker/lender relationship naturally and can result in faster closings.
After all, as a broker who is familiar with their favorite lender’s process, you are prepared to submit most of the required information beforehand. Your lender’s appreciation will likely result in wanting to close your deals quicker as well.
6. Accurate And Quick Communication With Clients
Not every deal will be smooth sailing so understanding the importance of accurate and quick communication is key to keeping a deal on track. Be ready to use the most efficient communication methods with your clients and lenders. Further, make sure you always disclose any fees that will impact your borrowers and be prepared to explain what each is for and how it compares to what other lenders are offering.
Know how your lender prefers to receive requested information and keep your calm when speaking with clients. Remember, stressful deals can easily induce panic but you can handle it as long as you know who can solve the issue. Transparency is a critical element of building a positive relationship with your client – especially if they are first-time buyers.
In situations where more lender assistance is needed, AIME escalations can be submitted through the AIME Member Portal. The escalation process is a means by which brokers can leverage the impressive network of partners AIME has built in order to grow and support the community!
7. Manage Your Clients, Don’t Let Your Clients Manage You
It’s so easy to let one client’s imperfect loan derail your day but you need to remember that you have other clients and other deals in your pipeline. Set reasonable expectations and boundaries for your clients early on in your relationship.
Clarify that you are capable of solving any potential issues that arise but they need to trust you to reach out to all relevant parties in a timely manner. If you need help, your lender partners have experience in dealing with failing loans so reaching out to them for advice on directing client conversations can be beneficial.
Put It All Together
In the end, A great loan officer will always start by working in their sphere of influence. They always work towards providing more value than they take and don’t hide when things go wrong. They maintain their database and will always prioritize relationships over dollars.
So, how many habits have you practiced? Follow these 7 steps to provide stellar service to your clients and you, the highly successful mortgage broker, will be rewarded with referrals for years to come!
Additionally, if you’re interested in getting connected with any of AIME’s sponsors such as RCN Capital, you can now connect through the AIME Member Portal at app.brokersarebetter.com. You can also ask questions regarding other members of this elite group of lenders that are committed to growing the wholesale channel through their support of the broker community and AIME.