As the summer mortgage season hits full stride there is a great deal of optimism about the housing market. Rates are holding steady, and still near historic lows, allowing first time mortgage buyers to afford more.
In this new mortgage sales environment, the same old tactics won’t work. To successfully target first time home buyers and millennials, lenders need to change things up, because what worked for other generations may not work so well for this one. What follows is a short list of where to start:
1. Get Online
Fifty percent of all borrowers currently find their lenders online, and this figure is growing every year, according to a recent study titled Mortgage Shopping’s Digital Divide. This means two things: you need to be online too, and you need to be fast, very fast!
Being online is more than having a website or even advertising online. Lenders need a way to capture prospects online and begin the conversation with first-time buyers there, too. Make sure you have a solid search strategy, know what your buyers are searching for and optimize around those keywords. Also, ensure you have an easy way for lenders to raise their hand if they are interested – easy access to a phone number, contact us page, and chat tools are all great ways to make it easy for visitors to get in touch. The good news is, mortgage lead management and marketing tools that did not exist during previous purchase markets are now affordable and attainable for lenders of all sizes.
After a potential borrower indicates interest in a mortgage a lender needs to get in touch with them immediately; not tomorrow, not this evening, and not even after lunch. The millennial consumer is not very patient. If the lender can’t get back to them right away, they will likely moved on. Nowadays, it is conceivable that a lender can be on the phone with a potential borrower just seconds after the borrower fills out a form, increasing the likelihood of converting the lead into a loan by 391 percent, according to the Ultimate Contact Strategy.
2. Build Trust With Real Estate Partners
While more home buyers start online, the first person they talk to is a Realtor. For this reason, cultivating real estate partners is still critical. To make these partnerships work, lenders must focus on providing superior service to agents. The way to do that is to be in constant communication about financing status – which means they need a technology platform that can help keep all parties involved up to date.
3. Focus On Service
Not every first-time buyer is ready to buy. Some will have second thoughts, and others may not qualify. But every one of them will look to their lender or Realtor for advice and counsel. If handled correctly, borrowers who aren’t ready will stil e grateful for a lender’s help. And when they are ready, chances are high they will choose that lender. The key is to focus on providing excellent service through education and information – and don’t let up.
How lenders do this year will depend heavily on how well they cater their business to the millennial market. By focusing on the above steps, they’ll put themselves in great shape to succeed. Velocify recently published an ebook with more tips for targeting today’s mortgage buyer. Download the full ebook – How to Sell in Today’s Mortgage Market.
About the Author: Chris Backe is the director of financial services at Velocify, and a CRM expert with more than 20 years of experience offering technology solutions to multiple industries. Chris has spent the last 10 years in the financial services industry, holding various positions at industry leading technology companies including Ellie Mae and Salesforce.