Written by Floify’s Dave Sims for Inman.com. Reposted here with permission.
Differentiate your mortgage business from the competition with more than just “great customer service.” Provide what millennials and a surprising number of older borrowers want — automated mortgage process status updates.
I’m going to show you how to do this.
Every loan officer purports to offer great service, which usually means the loan officer and their team provide prompt answers to borrower questions. Many loan originators succeed with this.
But you can go beyond that. Automated mortgage process status updates can elevate you above your competition. In the self-service world millennials live in, borrowers and real estate agents want impersonal updates as a loan moves forward through its process.
A real differentiator
In my case, I’m a software developer. For me to stand out from my competition, of course, I have to provide “great customer service,” but I also have to provide a software experience that my customers cannot get anywhere else. That is the real differentiator for me.
Similarly, elite mortgage loan originators have an opportunity to provide something that their borrowers cannot get anywhere else. Their niche service is a real differentiator.
I’ve seen both borrowers and real estate agents rave when they receive regular mortgage process status updates. It’s an easy win for you, and you’d be amazed at how many loan originators do not do this well.
Automate the answers to typical borrower questions
Typical borrower questions often include inquiries about:
- The mortgage process timeline
- Where the borrower is in that timeline
- How long it will take to reach the next step
Elite loan originators want to show the borrower:
- What will happen next in the mortgage process
- Who is responsible
- When the next step is initiated
- When the next step is expected to happen
- Updates no less frequent than once every three days
- When the next step is completed
Repeat as necessary.
Finally, when closing is ready to schedule, don’t just hand out the name and phone number of the title officer to your borrower so they can schedule their closing. Stay involved. Once you know when closing is scheduled, include the title company in the above notification process for a seamless borrower experience.
How to do this
So, how can you automate this?
Simple. Use a tool you already have: a spreadsheet.
Create an Updates spreadsheet that delineates the notification timeline we’ve been discussing.
I’ve created a spreadsheet template with many more detailed steps than I have explained here. Email me, and I’ll send you the download link. Edit the template to suit your circumstances.
Every day, whenever something important happens on a loan file:
- Consult your Updates spreadsheet, and find the relevant cell.
- Record the date, your notes and anything else germane.
- Email all relevant parties with a form letter. Always use your form letter. Include special “one-off” text on an as-needed basis and always in the same spot in the form letter.
Also on a daily basis, consult your Updates spreadsheet. If more than three days pass since the last update was sent on a loan file, send another update, even if nothing has changed. Do it every three calendar days, not three business days.
Why it’s important to send updates every three days
You might be thinking, “Why do I need to send an update if nothing has happened on a loan file?”
It’s due to the nature of humanity. People forget and overlook things. Furthermore, other people expect people to forget and overlook things. That’s why so many “just checking in” messages get sent every day.
So be proactive with your borrowers and real estate agents. If nothing has happened in the past three days, simply tell them that and remind them that you still expect the next deadline to be on time.
This is how you differentiate your mortgage business from competitors
This simple, automated mortgage-process-status update system goes far beyond “great customer service.” It provides the basis for you to out-compete your peers for business from millennial mortgage seekers.