How To Address Client Expectations

From: Ameen Kamadia

My wife and I spent the weekend at a newlywed retreat. What a great experience! It was a cross between a seminar and a vacation. We learned about marriage, had fun, and met new people at the same time.

One of the sessions reminded me of the mortgage business.

What we did was, as a group, we listed what we thought love was before we got married.

The list included things like:

  • Fairy tale romance
  • No fights
  • Lots of time together
  • Unconditional acceptance

Then we made a list of the way we think of love after marriage which included:

  • Lots of work
  • Compromises
  • Sacrifices

Big difference huh? And if you're married, you probably agree with these lists. If you're not married, you have been warned.

Anyway, I got to thinking that many of our clients have similar experiences when it comes to mortgages. Except many of them do the reverse. They think of it as a negative thing and then feel good about it when it's over. With all the negative publicity in the media, they come to us thinking they are in for a battle. They think we are going to rip them off, and we are only interested in their money. They get defensive when we ask about assets and many times aren't truthful.

But afterwards, they see that we are not the monsters the media makes us out to be. We don't charge junk fees or use bait and switch tactics. We really do care about their well being.

So how do we get them to change their attitude before the transaction?

I got the answer at the retreat as well. Before we started, they gave out a pre-evaluation. We were asked what we expected to learn and what we expected to get out of the program.

We can do the same thing: - a pre-application evaluation.

Ask potential clients what they expect from you and what they want. Get them to list 4-5 items, or make a questionnaire and ask them to rate items in terms of importance to them. Then give them proof of how you excel at the areas they listed.

For example, let's say they said they wanted to choose from a variety of loan options. You could show them a listing of all the lenders you deal with, and a list of all the loan programs each lender provides. That demonstration shows that they can choose from amongst thousands of loan programs by working with you. Of course, most of the loan programs will not be appropriate for what they want to do, but just showing them what you have will put them at ease.

Or, say they said they wanted to understand the loan process and not just be told what to do. In that case, you could give them some reading material, let them borrow a book, give them a list of websites, or invite them to a seminar you put on.

Do something that will address their concern and show them that you care. This will not only put them at ease, but make them easier to deal with throughout the loan process, increase the number of referrals they send you, and make you stand out from the competition.

Happy Originating!


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It is a fact, to what you said on your retreat, being accessable to your clients and do care about their well being. I do print out reading material from the web sites and always call my clients and keep them uptodate on what is going on with their files, and to make them feel comfortable in a new setting. Thank you for informing me of every aspect of the real estate and mortgage industry. I do enjoy reading all the materials that you send me. Thank You.

Posted by Dianne Goring on 10/29/2007 08:19:34



I think that much of what you write about is good common sense. unfortunately good common sense is not always applied in this business. The fact that good common sense procedures are not always used is an advantage to the ethical originator. The fact that many of my competitors do use bait and switch tactics and charge junk fees puts me in a great position to show my clients what sets me apart!

Posted by Christopher Ohlsen on 12/13/2007 14:51:12