Find out what I talk to new referral partners about and why 90% of the meetings I have end with the person asking how they could work with me.
What do you sell and why do realtors work with you? Why do real estate agents work with a lender?
- You offer them something they’ve never been offered before which is the ability to make more money.
- They view you as “their guy” and an “expert” at mortgages
- They like you
- You deliver on what you promise
How Does A Lender Help A Realtor Make More Money?
As much as I’d like to say realtors work with a lender because they care deeply about their clients best interest that just isn’t true. REALTORS ARE SELFISH! Most realtors have no idea why they refer their clients to a particular lender but every realtor has a lender they work with. Our job is to show the realtors why the current lender they use is not the right choice and here is how we do it.
We explain that if they work with us they will make more money, have more free time and sell more homes. The key is finding out what each realtors hot button is and using that to determine what you make the focus of your pitch.
- Taking their prospective buyers and acting as their back office for follow ups.
- Providing meaningful pre-approvals and an actual process for their prospects not just a pre-approval letter.
- Giving accurate updates, maximum price points and always referring back to the realtor.
- Providing the ability to do shortened contingency and close of escrow periods.
- Being ahead of the contingency period and always closing on time.
- Taking the headache out of a major piece of the transaction. Once they are with you the agent doesn’t have to think about the transaction again and can move on to selling their next house.
- Creating referral opportunities for the agent after close. (House warming parties, 3 year co-branded follow ups to be top of mind, invitations to events and monthly news letters)
They’ve Got The Brain Surgeon On Their Team
The “Brain Surgeon” close is one of the oldest sales techniques there is. It simply means that if someone views you as being smarter than they are, especially on a specific topic they are more likely to buy from you than anyone else.
As it pertains to realtors most agents know that you have a deeper knowledge of loans than they do but the key is to get them to see that you know more about business and real estate than they do to. Not in condescending way but you need to soft sell how much you know.
Once you’ve established that you’re smarter than they are or equally as smart in their eyes then you need to build on that by becoming part of their pitch. Everyone wants to have “a guy” that they can send people to when people ask for help but they only do it if they think the person they refer is going to make them look good. Again because realtors are selfish!
My top referral partner says this to every buyer he meets. Keep in mind most agents simply ask if they have a lender or have already been pre-approved. My top agent doesn’t care and he doesn’t even ask. He simply says.
“Part of working with me to help you buy a home is that I’ve aligned myself with the top lender in the area. He only works with a select group of real estate agents and we have an agreement that he pays special attention to all of my clients. I think it would be worth spending 5 to 10 minutes of your time before we look at houses to have a conversation with him. Let me know if you’d like me to make an introduction and I’ll let you guys take it from there.”
No client is going to say no and that’s all we want because now we get to have the conversation and impress the shit out of the client.
They Like You, And You Like Them
This seems pretty simple but you’d be surprised how many people use this aspect completely wrong. This is a twofold thing:
Most lenders use the fact that the agent likes you as one of their selling points. WRONG!!!!
If you rely on people liking you to get their business you’ll lose them really quickly. Remember THEY ARE SELFISH and you need to give them something for them to continue to work with you and actually send you business. Have you ever had an agent that you like, and they always answer your calls but you never get a deal from them? That’s because you haven’t given them what we discussed and you’re relying on how much they like you. That’s great if you need a friend but it doesn’t make you any money.
You need to have a relationship despite what I said above. I’m just saying your entire relationship can’t be based on if you like each other or not. Don’t’ go after every agent. Only go after agents that you like and that you think they might like you. It’s ok to meet with an agent and then realize “man I have nothing in common with them.” Then that’s not your agent. The only way to have long term loyal agents is to like each other, provide each other with what the other one needs and become friends. If you view the “liking each other” as your criteria as to whether or not you’re going to pursue the agent versus the “liking each other” as your value proposition you’ll be much better off.
Deliver On What You Promise
This is pretty self explanatory but too often it is overlooked.
Think of it this way: You’ve spent a few hours meeting with them. You’ve spent a few more hours getting them to see your value. You’ve spent a few more hours building a relationship and getting them to like you. You’ve spent a few more hours talking with some of their clients (even the deadbeats.) If you look at the total time you spent to get their first deal that’s like spending an entire day or 2 of your life on this 1 agent. If I’m going to spend an 1 or 2 days of my life with this person I better not fumble on the goal line or I might as well have taken a vacation those 2 days and never met this person.
I’m not going to explain what delivering on what you promise means since we’re all smart people. But what I am going to explain is how much your time is worth.
It’s and 8 to 12 hour thing to get an agent to switch lenders and start using you. There is no scenario that you should spend 12 hours on a loan. From application to docs each loan should take the LO about 2 to 5 hours of their time. As you can see the bulk of the time is getting the agent but too often we think the bulk of the time is the loan itself. If you’re going to sell out and go after this agent, then spend the time needed to close the deal and not throw away all that time you spent with the realtor.