The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) are the two big names in the industry. Use them! They are working great and generating some big waves in the business.
Mortgage rates are holding at all-time lows. Quit asking about whether they are going back up and get back to work! Make hay while the sun is shining! Mortgage rates have been dropping fairly steadily since 2002. Fact … they are going back up. We just don’t know when. So keep those files closing in the meantime.
FHA delinquencies are on the rise. This means we need to get as many people refinanced as possible right now. Get them out of FHA if it makes sense. If not, do like everyone else does and streamline them. If FHA goes away, we’re going to be in a lot worse shape as a country, not just an industry.
How to prepare yourself:
Plan—set yourself some goals
Set them with dates and actually hold yourself accountable to attaining them. The number one reason mortgage professionals fail in the business is because they stop growing when the business is booming. The big mortgage shops grow and decline with the market but their trends are always up. This is due to riding market conditions while continuing to grow despite them.
Research—find other products to offer
Most loan officers CAN sell a whole bunch of loan types but only DO sell FHA, HARP or some niche that they’ve been selling for years. Well … it’s time to diversify. There are plenty of loan products out there and the people that are closing more loans than you every month are offering more loan products too. Find out what your competitors are doing to beat you every month and start doing that. Then find out what they are missing and do that too! Business is often referred to as war for this reason.
Market yourself and your business
Call a marketing company to find out what is working. Marketing firms are the most under used and fantastic way to stay on top of market conditions. They always tell you what is working, and they have a good grasp on the state of the entire nation, not just your region. Lean on them, that’s what you pay them for. Spend some time and money getting your name out there. If you are not picking up five to 10 new leads per week, you are missing the boat. Many companies are supplying their loan originators with hundreds of leads per month. If you can close these leads at a rate of 10 to 15 percent, you are in for a real good month.
Here are a few key reasons that successful mortgage professionals don’t make it …
What no to do
►Stop marketing: Don’t think you cannot market yourself because you are too small or too large. It’s basic math … you close at 10 percent with 100 leads per month. That’s 10 closed deals per month!
►Stop preparing for growth: As you read this, thousands of people are thinking about turning down their marketing budget because business is booming. “I cannot handle anymore!” they say. You’ve probably said it before to someone else as you chuckle thinking of what a great month you are having. What about next month? What if rates go back up? What if HARP goes away? Plan for the worst and hope for the best.
►Stop hiring: Hiring is a big part of growth in any industry. You don’t want to be processing your own files do you? Do you want to be answering the phones too? Hire people to do this for you and get back to what you do best. Help people get into the right loan product for their situation.
►Stop growing: In business, there is growth and there is decline … no in-between.
Medford, Ore.-based TagQuest is a full-service marketing firm created specifically for the ever-changing business world. TagQuest assists companies with their direct marketing, advertising and branding needs, and knows what it takes to generate quality customers and, most importantly, how to retain those customers for years to come. TagQuest brings forth a unique opportunity to utilize our experience and expertise in varying consumer sales and marketing environments. For more information, call (866) 376-5540 or visit Tagquest.com.