MReport July 2021

TheMReport — News and strategies for the evolving mortgage marketplace.

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M R EP O RT | 25 FEATURE loans while the marketing cost to fund a refinance loan jumps 233% are met with tremendous hurdles. It's a double-whammy of increased expenses with reduced revenue—something the warehouse lenders will surely recognize, putting warehouse lines at risk Sales or Order Taking? I f increased expenses and decreased margins weren't enough, lenders need to be concerned with loan officers suc- cessfully turning the corner from being order takers to being a salesperson again. Most loan officers had record-breaking numbers in 2020 and larger commission checks than they have ever had in their careers, but we cannot ignore the incred- ible winds that were in their sails. Loan officers just had an entire year of picking up the phone and cashing in on the tremendous opportunity that the low-rate environment handed them. That doesn't mean they didn't work hard, but making as much money as they did in 2020 was significantly easier than in previous years, and we are beginning to return back to what those other years looked like. The mortgage industry is strange like that. Order taking is easier and pays higher than selling in a normal mortgage rate environment, and egos need to be checked at the door to mentally overcome that dynamic swiftly. As the incredible tailwinds die down, it'll take a lot of rowing to keep the forward momentum going. And it will take more than brute force rowing when the headwinds begin to buffet the industry. Adaptability Reins Supreme C harles Darwin is often credited with saying, "It is not the strongest of the species that survives, not the most intel- ligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change." At the heart of being adaptable is having the ability to improvise. Lenders can manage the rough road ahead by tapping into consumer behavior, which means data and technology. PwC reported that, in the last three years, there has been more accumulated data in the world than in the previous years of the human race. Technology platforms, such as lead management systems, loan origination systems, CRMs, etc. have become must-haves in every organization. Understanding your own first-party data and combining it with third-party data is now table stakes as well. Lenders who are working prospects in 2021 the same way they were in 2019 have not adapted to the change that has occurred around them. When 88% of consumers fund their loan with the first or second lender they speak with, understanding when consumers in your database first begin looking for a new mortgage is vital. Historically, credit triggers and MLS listing alerts helped signal to lenders that a consumer they know is in-market—but the goalposts have moved. We now know that consumers begin their shopping research 100 days in advance of those other traditional signals giving lenders in-the-know ample opportunity to influence the consumer buying journey and closing more business by being the first lender to engage. There is a whole different game being played by first-mover lenders who have developed their third-party data acquisition strategies in order to gain a more complete view of consumer behaviors. Whether it's advancing your marketing automation, deploying machine learning algorithms, or just informing your loan officers who the next best consumer is to call in order to give them the best chance at success … leveraging your first-party data alone will not get you to where you need to be anymore. Consider the behavior that consumers and prospects are exhibiting outside of your "four walls." This constitutes a much bigger share of consumer behavior and intent to fund a load. The winning combination is enhancing your first- party data with outside or third-party consumer behavioral data. That's where the rubber meets the road in this bumpy environment. MIKE ESHELMAN, CMB, is the Head of Consumer Finance at Jornaya, a data company that delivers consumer-journey insights to publishers, marketers, analytics, and compliance professionals. With over 16 years' experience in consumer finance, Eshelman has extensive knowledge in lead generation, lead management, and leveraging data sets to deliver desired results in the mortgage industry. For more information, visit Anywhere. Anytime. MReport Digital Bringing Today's Lending Headlines into Focus, MReport Digital Puts Mortgage Banking News at Your Fingertips Experts you trust. People you know. News you want. MReport is putting essential mortgage market news at your fingertips with our new digital edition, now available online via your smartphone, tablet, or computer. Enjoy the magazine at your desk, and tap into MReport Digital's easily accessible platform anywhere, anytime. Committed to giving originators, servicers, and all lending professionals access to smarter perspectives, MReport believes it's time to think differently about the mortgage industry. Because the American Dream is evolving . . . are you? Subscribe to MReport and MReport Digital now! Call 800.856.8060 or connect with us online at to take advantage of our special introductory offer! powered by THEFIVESTARINSTITUTE

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