Residential Magazine

Brokers Can Dominate a Competitive Market

These strategies can take your business to the next level

By Desmond Smith

For more than a year, mortgage professionals have encountered challenges few could have seen coming. Even though there was no playbook for COVID-19, the mortgage industry thrived in this environment and many originators had their best-ever months, quarters and years for sales.

As things return to normal, a couple of common questions are being asked. What’s next? And what about the lack of inventory? Don’t be worried. The reality is that mortgage brokers are set up to succeed in any market, especially a purchase-heavy market. This means that when rates tick up, brokers flourish. 

With the market returning to normal, more homes will make their way back on the market — especially as forbearance programs that were put into place as part of pandemic relief programs come to an end. When this happens, the broker channel is ready to dominate.

The mortgage broker channel also is poised to grow exponentially. Right now, about one in five consumers work with an independent mortgage broker on new loans. Expect this share to continue to rise as consumers become more educated on the fact that going through a mortgage broker is the faster, easier and cheaper way to get a mortgage. 

Consumers can save significantly when working with a mortgage broker as opposed to a large bank or retail lender. This makes working with a broker the obvious choice and the most financially beneficial for the borrower. Here are some tactics you can use as a broker to stand out in a competitive market while further showcasing to consumers why working with a broker is the right choice.

Value relationships

When it comes to your business, you have to make the time and put in the effort to build and cultivate strong relationships. Every relationship you have is important. Whether it’s your lenders, Realtors, appraisers or title agents, each person involved in the mortgage process has a valuable role to play in the success of your origination business. 

Taking the time to nurture these relationships allows you to further build your referral network, which will keep you top of mind whenever a lending need arises. It’s important to remember that these relationships don’t form overnight, but doing things such as liking your partners’ social media pages and commenting on their posts can be a great starting point. 

Now that the world is returning to a more stable place, you may be able meet with someone for coffee or breakfast to kick off the day. You can even join your clients at the closing table and get to know the Realtors in the transaction. The opportunities for relationship building are endless. 

Continue learning

This is a fast-paced, ever-changing industry, and if you don’t take the time to keep up on the latest trends and lender products, you’ll miss out on ways to impress your borrowers and referral partners. Carve out time to understand what is changing. 

Maybe this means that you come to work half an hour early to give yourself time to catch up on the news before diving in to connect with your clients. Maybe it means that you seek out a mentor to help you navigate the industry. However you go about it, remember that a mortgage broker is considered an expert and is expected to have the proper knowledge to ensure their borrower gets the best loan possible that suits their needs. 

No matter how much experience you have, every day presents a new learning opportunity. The sooner you embrace change and growth, the more successful you will be. 

Deliver speed

Speed matters, especially in this environment. It’s important to have a “never relax” mentality, grind hard and get your borrowers in their dream homes as quickly as possible. Technology is a massive component to this, and it’s important to continue to adapt and find additional ways to make the homebuying process as fast as possible. 

Although the market is expected to normalize, it’s still competitive, and borrowers are always looking for ways to stick out among the competition when submitting an offer on a house. These days, a fast closing is equivalent to or better than a cash offer. Your speed allows you to be a hero to your real estate partners and borrowers, further putting you ahead of the competition.

The future is bright for mortgage brokers. As long as they continue to provide borrowers with elite client service, low rates and fast closings, they’re going to dominate. ●


  • Desmond Smith

    Desmond P. Smith is chief growth officer at United Wholesale Mortgage. In this position, Smith focuses on innovative ways to advance the independent mortgage broker channel. Smith brings three decades of knowledge and experience to the table from his time spent at the Federal Housing Administration, Wells Fargo, JPMorgan Chase, Citi, Capital One Home Loans and Fannie Mae. He has been recognized for creating high-performance cultures, empowering teams and transforming businesses.

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