Real estate agents first and foremost serve their clients, those people looking to buy a home. Mortgage lenders — especially independent mortgage lenders like GoPrime Mortgage, Inc. . (dba PrimeRate Mortgage Lending Inc.) — serve those very same people. Despite having to work together, though, these two professionals often find it difficult to develop a lasting and trusting realtor-lender relationship
Both Realtors and lenders have to get along in a fast-paced environment that requires excellent communication skills. Both are often experienced at serving their clients. It makes sense that developing a good Realtor-lender relationship can improve your business — both in terms of quality and quantity. Use the following seven tips in your business interactions to end up with a Realtor-lender relationship that lasts a lifetime.
Our 7 Tips for Building a Realtor-Lender Relationship
1. Be Accessible and Proactive
Lenders need real estate agents to be accessible during the sometimes-rapid process of home buying. As a Realtor, you’re often the liaison between the lender and the homebuyer. Check in with your lender regularly and make sure you take his calls. Then you can report back to the homebuyer in a timely and consistent manner that makes you look good too.
Every milestone in the loan process is a chance for you to show your commitment to the success of the sale. Be proactive when you’re building a Realtor-lender relationship. Be tactful in how you approach updates, and listen to the lender so you can deliver exactly what’s needed when it’s needed. While you both serve the home-buying client, you both need to serve each other as well.
2. Establish Preferred Communication Methods
Establishing preferred means of communication may seem straightforward, but it’s something that’s often overlooked. Simply by asking the lender if he prefers emails, texts or phone calls, you can easily improve your overall communication. It may be the simplest way to improve your Realtor/lender relationship.
Make sure the lender knows your preferences too. As a Realtor, you’re constantly in and out of the office, so you may prefer texts to emails. If an issue arises that’s important enough, a phone call may be required. You should both agree to check for voicemail messages frequently.
3. Clear and Honest Communication
When everything is going perfectly — be honest. When there are issues on a loan file — be honest. It’s part of treating others how you want to be treated. Instead of making excuses, get to work on a solution. Inform the lender so he knows exactly what’s happening. Honesty is what establishes your integrity and creates a lasting Realtor/lender relationship.
Things don’t always go according to plan. People make mistakes. But you’ll stand out if you are 100 percent honest and transparent no matter what happens. Living up to your word time and time again establishes you as a trusted resource in the real estate community.
4. Be a Resource
Offer value to your clients through resources and tools. Be a trusted expert in the community. Creating value — providing free advice — also keeps you on the forefront of homebuyers’ minds. You can become the go-to real estate agent by offering related resources through:
- Social media posts
Pack theses resources with fresh market data, news from property experts, and creative looks at old topics. Leave out noisy irrelevant news. As a trusted advisor in the real estate community, you’ll be able to point your clients to the best professionals — such as lenders, inspectors and appraisers. You benefit by establishing your own authority and developing long-lasting Realtor-lender relationships.
5. Remember You’re a Team
Realtors and lenders can only accomplish your clients’ goals by working together as a team. With this in mind, you can build a strong Realtor-lender relationship through teamwork and reciprocity. Go above and beyond by thinking of lenders as more than clients — and you may end up with a client for life.
Consider how you can make a lender’s life easier, and you may be surprised by the thoughtfulness that comes back to you. Both lenders and real estate agents can be difficult to work with at times, but that’s how any business is — it’s easier for both of you when you remember that you’re a team that has the same goals.
6. Use Social Media
Social media is a great technology all Realtors should add to their toolbox. Through relevant and helpful posts, you can communicate changing information rapidly. But be careful not to share content just for the sake of sharing — that can actually damage your credibility. But don’t be afraid of letting your personality shine through. People do business with Realtors they like.
You and your lender can work together to make social media work for both of you. By communicating and sharing each other’s content across social media platforms, you strengthen your presence and credibility, while improving your Realtor-lender relationship. Social media is an effective way to reach hundreds of new clients and fortify your business for long-term goals.
7. Get Your Clients to the Closing
Closing is still the mark of a true real estate professional. Closing is the end goal for everyone involved, so getting your clients to the closing must be your top priority. Do whatever you can to help the lender. Remember, the best referrals come from satisfied clients who’ve successfully bought houses.
Closing on time also helps generate future referrals. It eliminates any problems in the Realtor/lender relationship and makes everybody happy. Zack Adam of Prime Mortgage Lending of West Asheville prides itself on closing on time, all the time, so he makes a great lending partner.
Above All — Be Consistent
Being consistent reinforces everything you do as a Realtor. By building strong business relationships, you can weather market changes and still increase your business because of great referrals. Your interactions with a lender can either help or hurt you in the future. Keep them helpful.
Strong Realtor/lender relationships resemble a two-way street, with business referrals going both ways. In fact, Zack has gone out of his way to serve Realtors. He’s become a resource for Realtors with his website, blog posts and videos. Learn how Zack makes your life as a Realtor easier on this video on YouTube.