Presidential Bank Mortgage (Presidential) is an operating division of Presidential Bank, a privately held, federally chartered savings bank with $500 million in assets. Serving local communities from 16 branch locations across Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania since 1987, Presidential is a full-service, residential mortgage lender. Click here to download the case
As a mortgage professional, one of your biggest challenges will be in the area of maintaining a steady pipeline of repeat customers. This is because loan officers are usually too busy to keep up with the daily management of their database. As a result, they lose countless clients almost routinely. Surefire CRM, which is widely regarded as the best CRM software for Mortgage Professionals, was created to avoid this needless loss of business for mortgage lenders in the country.
In this article, you will learn everything you need to know about the best CRM software and how exactly it can impact your business. You will learn what a mortgage CRM is, why it is essential for your business, how to do a proper assessment to determine the right CRM for you, and what makes up a Mortgage CRM. What we hope to achieve with this is for you to be armed with all the necessary information you need to make the best decisions for your business.
So, let’s get to it!
What is a Mortgage CRM?
Of course, as a loan officer or mortgage professional, you probably have the general idea of what a mortgage CRM is and what it constitutes. Simply put, it is a software that is targeted at managing the relationship between you and your customers. Sounds simple right? But it is not that easy.
Is Mortgage CRM Software Important?
Yes, having a quality mortgage CRM is essential for your business. The bedrock of sustainable success in any business are the relationships between the business and its customers. With regards to the money lending industry, the quality and quantity of the relationships you are able to keep is one of the primary differentiators between one mortgage firm and another. There are a few questions to ask yourself to be able to accurately judge the strength of your database at this time.
What percentage of your clients return to use your services?
No business can survive the long haul on the income from first time customers alone. In fact, the goal of every startup is to grow to the point where they have a significant number of returning customers. So, if the percentage of clients that return to buy from you is less than 5% – 15%, you should be bothered.
How accurate is your database?
Data is everything in the world of business. It is in analyzing hard data that you can determine if you are making progress or the business is suffering. A company’s database should have all the records of the transactions made, the date of the transactions, and with whom the transactions were for. Relying on your ability to accurately monitor all this without the aid of a mortgage CRM software could help save you both time and money.
How much faith do your customers and partners have in you?
Trust is crucial, but when it comes to money business, it is beyond essential – if that’s possible. Most of the customers you are going to be working with as a mortgage professionals have no prior experience in business. For some of them, the loan they are seeking is the biggest financial move they have had to make. In that case, it takes a lot of trust for them to choose you over your competitors. It also takes a great impression and trust level for customers to come back to use your services. So, do your customers and partners trust you?
Do your customers like you?
Everyone, if given the choice, would prefer to work with people they like. It is a human thing to do. It is common in every business, but in the money industry, it seems to be even more pertinent. A client who likes you and the way you handled your first business with them will return for your services. On the other hand, first time borrowers are even more likely to purchase based on a superficial feeling. They are nervous and looking for familiar ground. So, if they like you, they will choose you.
If left to your discernment, you may not have the accurate answers to the above questions. And that is where a good mortgage CRM software comes into play. As they say, numbers never lie! With a mortgage CRM software, you can easily provide answers to the above questions and much more.
Let us consider the importance of mortgage CRM software
A CRM will help you to build the strongest and most stable relationships with your clientele. Your customers will be pleased with your extreme attention to detail and amazed by your immense knowledge about their preferences if they have worked with you before.
What’s more, it allows your mortgage processes to be seamless. With a CRM software, you don’t have to consistently task your brain to remember the tiniest details, making the experience remarkably easier.
You can track and manage the percentage of return customers for your business. This way you can tell if your business is failing, why it is failing, and then you can set up measures to stem that tide. On the other hand, it can also show you if your business is doing well – by displaying the percentage of return customers and the frequency of purchase. So, you can step up those actions you are doing correctly.
With a mortgage CRM software, you don’t have to guess what’s going on with your business; you know exactly what is happening. Your business stands better chance of survival and even thriving with such data.
Perhaps the most important reason you need a CRM is because you can close more deals and help your customers secure more loans. Of course, the goal of every business is profit, and the right mortgage CRM will ensure you close loans faster and with much less effort than your competition.
Another advantageous effect of using the right mortgage CRM is that your realtors will demonstrate a higher confidence in your business. You can notice this by the amount of referrals they will bring to your business over time.
Assessment of your Mortgage CRM
To assess and evaluate the effectiveness of your mortgage marketing CRM, you have to first understand the goal of having one in the first place. There are basically three primary reasons to use a mortgage CRM
- Enable you to close loans faster and easier
- Accurately facilitate your marketing efforts
- Substantially grow your pipeline
A good mortgage CRM software will satisfy all the below requirements:
- System integration
- User Friendliness
- Lead generation capability
What makes up a Mortgage CRM? What are the additional features?
All CRMs in all professions aim to manage customer relationships. Therefore, they share certain features and similarities. They all track leads, manage your prospective and active customers and centralize your contact database so that your loan officers can manage their pipelines more efficiently. But with mortgage marketing CRM, there are more features at your disposal. Let’s take a look at these unique features below.
Mortgage marketing and regulation compliance
Lenders and mortgage professionals must be up to date with the most recent compliance regulations and issues within the industry. This is because compliance in mortgage marketing is critical. To that end, you would find that many industry-specific marketing CRMs are equipped with integrated compliance modules. Some bodies and organizations make and enforce these regulations such as FHA, HUD, and VA.
The best mortgage CRM should have the features that keep you updated on the latest changes in regulations by any of these agencies. These features ensure that no lines are crossed and that all the business operations are in line with the industry best practices.
Loan pipeline management
Mortgage CRM can work with the LOS system to improve the management of your loan pipeline. Mortgage pipeline management is a crucial area where loan officers need help because it’s tough to handle on your own. A CRM would make it easy for a lender to view loan information, contact information, as well as emails and phone call history. You can also track loans at various stages of processing and view the various loan reports. What more? With a mortgage CRM, you can synchronize your most essential data such as 1003 application form and your loan status value.
Mortgage events alert
Mortgage CRMs usually have tools that pop up alerts to inform the mortgage professional of upcoming events. These events could be happenings within the company or the mortgage industry at large. For example, your CRM can remind you of which clients would need to refinance in the not too distant future.
Similarly, the best mortgage CRM would provide updates for you for about application upgrades and the latest happenings in the industry. With this feature, you will be aware of changes in UFMIP and news about increased annual premiums.
Referral partner marketing
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Mortgage email marketing, otherwise known as Drip marketing campaign is an integral part of marketing in the mortgage industry. The dedicated mortgage CRMs can send targeted messages to your referral partners and borrowers. These CRMs also monitor the campaigns so you can know your loyal partners, strengthen partnerships, and figure out how to reward them.
With this feature, your real estate partners and borrowers you have worked with will routinely receive automated emails. This would ensure that, in a competitive market, you remain in the minds of your customers. Also, you would always have fresh mortgage marketing content to email your clients, you won’t forget to email, and you would free up more time to prospect new leads.
Assessment of your Mortgage CRM
To assess and evaluate the effectiveness of your mortgage marketing CRM, you have first to understand the goal of having one in the first place. There are three primary reasons to use a mortgage CRM
- Enable you to close loans faster and easier
- Accurately facilitate your operation and marketing efforts
- Substantially grow your pipeline
A good mortgage CRM software will satisfy all the above requirements. However, there are certain general qualities or properties you can use to judge if a CRM would be great for you and your company in the long term.
Range of operation
Indeed, you should be concerned about the capabilities of the CRM you choose to use for your business. This is especially necessary in terms of analyzing the range or scale of price points and features of the CRM. You need to study the prospective CRM and understand what it means for your business.
Let us simply explain this; some CRMs are better suited for small business operations, while others are specifically created to handle businesses on a much larger scale. So, it is not unusual to find a CRM that does not have enough features to accommodate big companies. Likewise, you can also find CRMs that have price ranges that cannot be scaled down to the level of small businesses.
However, the best mortgage CRM software should be able to accommodate a broad spectrum of price ranges and features. It should factor in small businesses such as local mortgage lenders, as well as the biggest money lenders in the industry. After all, it is these small firms and startups that eventually scale up and become industry giants.
SureFire CRM is trusted by mortgage professionals ranging from small broker teams to credit unions to sizeable independent mortgage bankers. It has possibly the broadest range of operation in the market. The good news is that you can quickly request a demo here.
Why is it vital that you examine the range of operations of your CRM?
Now here’s the thing, switching CRMs is much more than just changing a program or hardware in your company. The process of changing from one CRM to another can be tedious and very complicated. CRMs usually have steep learning curves and varying modes of operations.
Changing your software may require retraining your entire staff, improving your other systems, and most importantly, your mode of operation; all that would detract from your productivity within that period.
So, you must pick a mortgage CRM software that is flexible and can adjust to the future needs of your business.
Ease of operation
Another way a CRM can be evaluated is based on its ability to simplify the loan processes with clear instructions. Ideally, an industry-specific mortgage CRM software has the features that allow you to upload your documents, fill out your 1003 documentation, and e-sign where necessary. All in a bid to reduce stress on the part of the borrower.
There are even options where the borrower can upload all the necessary documents online. But even with these apparent benefits, a lot of lenders still find it difficult navigating through all these processes. This is usually because there is CRM software that is not very user friendly and easy to use. Hence, they complicate things and confuse the customer.
A mortgage CRM should have a system of operation whereby borrowers can easily upload their documents and e-sign, processors can easily access the uploaded documents, and managers can easily monitor what is going on in each loan officer’s pipeline. The best mortgage CRM would have all these processes done with just a click from each of the parties.
Why you should consider ease of operation while assessing a mortgage CRM
The average human doesn’t like stress and would do anything to avoid it. Having a CRM that would confuse your borrowers – who are already probably anxious about the loan they are seeking – would be counterproductive. One of the primary purposes of mortgage marketing CRM is to reduce stress. So, what good is a CRM that confuses and stresses out your customers?
Another thing you should consider is the time it takes to fully process one loan payment. If your system operates smoothly, you will close loans at a much faster rate. With a good CRM giving good and easy to follow prompts, your clients can quickly fill the forms and upload their documents. Also, if it takes too long for a potential customer to understand your prompts and do the paperwork, they may decide to opt-out of using your services.
Mortgage Loan Originating System Integration
The mortgage LOS system is the most essential technology available to money lenders and mortgage professionals. It covers the entire lending process from the initial loan application all the way to the payment of the funds. So, for a piece of your organization so critical, having a CRM that does not integrate with it would be counter-intuitive.
Yes, it is a great software with brilliant reviews, but does it integrate smoothly with your LOS system? It may not be worth it to disrupt your entire Loan Origination System to suit the requirements of a particular CRM. Besides, regular CRMs complicates the mortgage process, even popular ones like Salesforce and Hubspot.
Why LOS system integration is necessary for evaluating your CRM
The bottom line is that, if your CRM does not work seamlessly with your loan originating system, then there’s no need for a CRM. The entire purpose of a CRM is to facilitate mortgage lead generation, pipeline, and help you close loans at an incredible pace. For that to be done properly, it must be able to integrate with the LOS you have in place. Whether it is Mortgage Director, Calyx Path, or Encompass – which are the major LOS providers available – the right CRM for you should be compatible with any of them.
User experience is simply how your borrowers feel about your business – what feelings they associate with your services. You provide a positive user experience if your customers enjoy working with you. On the other hand, if they feel like your system didn’t serve them in the best possible way, that’s bad user experience.
It’s no secret that for your mortgage business to do well, the majority of your borrowers must enjoy working with you. Firstly, mortgages and money problems are stressful. Most of the clients that would come your way are already stressed about not making a mistake, the risks they are taking, and could do without paperwork and complicated processes adding to their troubles.
The best mortgage CRMs expedite loan processes by providing a user-friendly interface. For this to be effective, however, there has to be a synergy between your LOS system and CRM. The mortgage CRM of your choice should afford your borrowers the ability to e-sign easily, without stress, and without complications.
Why user experience is essential in how your mortgage CRM should be evaluated
Well, the easy answer to why user experience should be a critical consideration when assessing the value of a mortgage CRM is that; user experience keeps you in business. In fact, you would be in business only a little longer than when you stop producing positive user experience.
On the contrary, if you have very positive ratings by your customers and partners, it becomes easier to convert prospects. The right mortgage CRM for you is the one that can achieve the best possible ratings in terms of service to your customers.
The best CRM is able to automate a lot of its communication to maintain a good relationship with your customers and partners. Simply put, a good mortgage CRM is a more reliable follow up option because the possibility of forgetting to follow up is completely out of the question. The CRM would automate many of the emails that would be sent to the borrower or your realtors.
With a CRM, you can celebrate with your partners and customers on account of their birthdays, anniversaries, or any other special event. These emails can be customized for a more personal touch – and for an important customer – or it can be generic with only the name of the recipient being the difference.
Why you should assess your CRM on the basis of communication
Without communication, there is no relationship. Whether in the area of lead generation, prospecting, or pipeline building, mortgage professionals need to be in touch with their real estate agents and customers. Just by being in touch, you significantly increase your chances of being used again. Most loanees would prefer to work with a professional they had used in the past but end up losing touch due to poor follow up.
Sending automated messages on important occasions like birthdays and anniversaries goes a long way to endear you to your customers. For your realtors and partners, an email reminding them of how together, you closed a major loan and how incredible they were throughout the process, could propel you into becoming their favorite.
You would build strong bonds, which would, in turn, affect the frequency with which your customers return to use your service.
Factors to consider when assessing the right mortgage CRM for you
After considering the general qualities of a CRM software, it is time to get down to the specifics. Because what good is a system that is highly rated, but won’t be the right fit for your business? With that in mind, here are a few things you should consider before you decide the best mortgage CRM software for you
- What would be your preference in terms of how you want to host the software? Do you plan to host it on the cloud or locally on your servers?
- Does the mortgage system you are shooting for work well with the other systems you have in place? Try to consider software that suits your existing legacy systems such as your accounting and ERP systems.
- What specific capabilities would the right CRM for you have? Do you need multiple marketing processes like emails, phones, direct marketing, etc.?
Generally, these are company-specific questions, and only you can have the answers to them. May we reiterate once more that the best mortgage CRM for you is the one that seamlessly optimizes your operation and not the one that is the rave of the moment. You can sign up for a demo free of charge to see if we are the best fit for you.
- The best thing you can do for your mortgage business is to incorporate a dedicated mortgage CRM. Not a regular CRM like the type used for other companies as that can be counterproductive, but a mortgage CRM.
- Understand that when you are shopping for a CRM, it is for the long run. So, endeavor to get yourself a mortgage CRM that is flexible and can scale up or down, depending on how business is going. Of course, you may want to try out Surefire; it has the best possible scalability.
- Surefire mortgage CRM has unique offerings that set us apart from most other CRM’s out there. Our mortgage marketing plans include mortgage social media marketing, mortgage landing pages, and mortgage marketing flyers, among others.