It’s hard this day and age to make it as a mortgage broker, the market is hopping with competition, and for mortgage brokers it can be cut throat when dealing with their competition, and gaining clientele with real estate agents.
You see, most real estate agents already have one or two particular mortgage companies they give referrals to. It can be very difficult to gain acceptance from an agent whom already works with a set group of brokers. It is hard getting them to trust you, and it is hard just getting them to sit down and have them listen to what you have to offer them.
Most agents are busy, and some of them can be downright snobs when it comes to having a strange mortgage broker walk into their office. Others won’t give you the time of day, and then you have the ones that let you talk to them, yet never give you any referrals or call you back.
I’m in the real estate business, so I figured it would only be fair to give mortgage companies the heads up on what to do, and what not to do when you first walk into an office.
1. Do not walk up to someone’s desk to immediately shake their hand.
2. Do not underestimate the secretary. If agents are not in, do not ask to hand out cards. Leave them at his or her desk and ask them to hand them out. It is impolite to hover around anyone’s desk when they are not in.
3. Do not ask to see listings! I actually had a sleazy broker come in once asking to see our offices listings! Whut whut!
4. Do not call the agency after you have just been there. I had one guy actually stop in and ask for business cards of all of out agents. I kindly obliged because I did not want to be rude. After he left, he waited about an hour and called asking for so and so. After transferring them to so and so’s voice mail, he then called again asking for another agent. The process went on until he had left all of the agents a voice mail. The 15 rings I got back to back were not appreciated!
5. Do not fiddle around with things on anyone’s desk!
6. Do NOT bad mouth your competition and call them unprofessional. If you ask an agent what mortgage company they use the most… accept it. Do not roast that agency…it only makes you look bad.
7. Do not pester the RE Broker to set up a meeting. He/she will call you if they are interested.
8. Do not under any circumstances remove competition business cards from any of the agents desks! You shouldn’t be hovering over their desks anyway!
9. Do not under any circumstances try and bribe the secretary. I once had a guy tell me he would give me $200.00 for every referral I sent to him! Hah! That bribe got passed on to the boss man, and our company has never done business with him because of this.
10. If you are visiting an office for the first time, try not to take up too much of someone’s time. 5 minutes is the cut off, unless they genuinely seem interested. Notice a blow off when one is given.
11. Do not ask how business is doing if you have just stepped foot into the office for the first time.
12. Don’t be shy. Some mortgage brokers come in and are extremely shy. So shy that they forget to state their names. They ask to leave business cards and leave. I do not see how one ever plans on establishing a relationship with an agent/agency by doing this.
1. Do visit often. The more an agent sees your face the more likely they are to open up to you and consider you. Friendships really have to be established before business. Do make sure these visits do not go over 10 minutes at a time. After you feel the agency has grown comfortable with you, ask them if they would like you to bring them a cup of coffee or something.
I know it sucks to spend money on other people, but a little bottie kissing every now and then will work.
2. Do establish a friendly relationship with the secretary if no one else is in the office. Besides he/she is the one who may or may not go back and tell the agents how nice you were.
3. Do bring a business card each and every time you visit. Even if it seems like your cards are piling up. The more the merrier.
4. Do ask if you can set up a business card stand. Do ask by your 5th or 6th visit, not your first visit, and don’t just put it up on your own.
5. If you have an agency that you do a lot of business with, do make sure you bring them a platter of cookies or cake during the holidays. These little sweet nothings will ensure future business, and the agents will remember you and recommend you more often than not.
6. Do ask for other agents business cards, but do not call them on their cell phones. Call them at the office.
7. Make sure you explain to the agent what you have to offer. The brutal truth is that most agents will use you if you lend a hand with advertisement fees. Umbrellas and beach bags will not do the trick.
8. When you have formed a relationship with a particular agent or agency do form lunch outings together. The closer you become with the person, the better the relationship, and business relationship.
9. A sneaky trick is to play the wounded victim. Do not be afraid to let agents know that business is very slow. Sometimes you may hit a soft spot, and they will consider you above anyone else. I actually saw this work recently. Hehe!
10. Do drop off pens with your logo on them, magnets, and other cheap office supplies. This allows the agent to remember you more often. The more you can get your name/logo into the office the better.
11. When entering an agency for the first time, stand at the door, and say hello. Then state your name, and kindly ask if the agent has a moment to talk. One man in particular used this line, ‘Hi my name is ……….., I was just wondering if I could take a moment of your time to quickly tell you about the service I offer.’
He then in less than 2 minutes stated his claims. He did not waste time, he did not brag, nor put down competition. He simply made a connection by using polite mannerism.
Because of his kind nature, and manners the agent actually showed interest in him. He visits weekly, and we have actually used him because of his simple opening statement. Remember you are advertising yourself, more than you are your services. Personality plays a huge role in whether or not someone will work with you.