Nathan Rufty is a mortgage coach and trainer with
Mortgage Marketing Pros, a company that works with loan
officers to develop marketing plans that increase leads and
closed loans. Mortgage Marketing Pros was created by a
producing loan officer and a master marketer to teach
mortgage professionals how to create their own businesses
without relying so much on one or two streams that can
dry up without warning. For more information, visit
mortgagemarketingpros.com. Reach Rufty at (909) 731-1218.
support staff that will handle processing, under writing
and funding your loan.
Improve your business
Evaluate the cost of running your business. Where
does the bulk of your business originate from? What
do your customers say about you? How could you
make the process smoother for you and your borrower? Where can you improve on file submission to
your processing department?
This process can be as simple as taking a look at how
you answer your phone or improving your system of
touch points after closing, such as noting wedding and
loan anniversaries, birthdays, newborns, new jobs, etc.
These little details will increase your overall numbers.
Establish monthly and quarterly goals that will
improve the state of your business. Set obtainable
goals that include building team morale. Really understand the “why” of your goals. Doing so will help build
an energy that’s contagious. Do not focus too much
on support personnel. Your administration staff will
handle that side of business.
Delegate tasks to those support staff. There is no reason why your focus should be on processing, underwriting or the funding of your loan. Know the file flow,
but do not be part of the process. Your borrower pays
for those services through the loan. Allow for that to
Do not allow yourself to be pulled in multiple directions that take you away from your primary focus:
generating more loans. Learn to delegate tasks to
other staff members.
If you have been in the mortgage industry for any length of time, you know the industry weath- ers ups and downs. The only way to get through those down periods is to develop and maintain a
set of daily positive habits.
Working on your business is as important as working
in your business. In other words, you, as a loan originator,
need to treat yourself as a business within a business.
With that said, how do you know what is improving
your business or what is hurting your business? Let’s
explore some habits that can improve your focus and
keep you above the fray of day-to-day operations.
Mortgage professionals who implement these
habits — and really focus on improving themselves
and their business — will hear their phone ring with
new business, leads and connections.
The first priority is you. No one else is going to give you
a paycheck but you. Focus your efforts on daily improvement, such as getting up a little earlier than normal
to work out, read, enjoy a healthy breakfast, study a
program. Aim to be the first one in the office. When
you have that alone time, that extra hour can be about
focusing on your mind and body.
Mortgage originators are required to complete an
annual eight-hour continuing-education course to
maintain their license. Your education should not stop
there. The mortgage industry is all about education.
Every file you fund needs to be a learning experience
on how you can improve your presentation skills, your
file flow, communication efforts, file preparation and
Everybody has the same amount of time in a day.
How do you spend yours? Are you wasting it by sleeping until 9 a.m., taking long lunches or leaving work
early? To find success, you must be willing to spend a
few hours after work or on the weekends developing
business or getting up to speed on new loan programs.
Set aside time each day to focus on marketing, connecting with your borrowers, lead partners, vendors, etc.
You also have to weed your garden regularly. Clean
up your database by sorting hot, warm and cold leads
so you don’t waste time and money on e-mail marketing and sending out birthday cards and direct-mail
pieces to prospects who have moved or are no longer
in the market for a mortgage. Get rid of those affiliate
partners who don’t send you any business, and focus
on the ones who do.
Drill down on what affects your income. Wearing
multiple hats will only burn you out and take you away
from productive projects. Wear one hat. That should
be producing loans, not processing them. You have a
The last thing you want to do is throw money at a
problem and expect different results. Look at where
you are spending your advertising dollars, and rate
the return on investment.
If you are spending money on one form of media
and you are not seeing results, stop spending money
on it. Yes, you need to invest in your business, but set
a budget for it. Your budget will drain fast if you are
not properly monitoring where your money is going.
With all the free advertising avenues that are available
online, look at retooling your marketing plan to focus
on what will have the greatest return.
Last, act like you’re a true W-2 employee. Sure,
you’re able to come and go as you please, but remember that will be reflected in your take-home pay.
Get in the habit of working eight hours or more a day,
like a true W-2 employee does.
Putting in the work and effort will pay off. If you
treat the job like it’s part-time work, then you’ll bring
home a part-time paycheck. Mortgage originating is
all about sales. You have the potential to make a great
living, or you can half-step it and live from paycheck
n n n
Start with a couple habits to fine tune them and then
move onto a couple more. Stay focused on your business all the time, especially during the slow times, and
your business will flourish during the good times. It is
easy to lose sight of your primary function as a loan
originator, which is to generate leads. Focus on you
and your ability to generate income, and the rest of
the job will fall into place. n
These Habits Can Help Beat
a Mortgage-Industry Lull
Developing strategies to handle the down times is part
of pursuing a path to success
By Nathan Rufty
“Do not allow
yourself to be
pulled in multiple
take you away
from your primary