Sales and Consumer Engagement
How to Leverage Encompass LO Connect to Present Loan Scenarios to Borrowers
One of Encompass LO Connect’s most powerful and widely used feature is its ability to generate loan scenarios, which enable loan officers to quickly present multiple loan scenarios, with rates and eligibility, to prospective buyers on any device, at any time.
We wanted to find out how mortgage experts are maximizing the value of this feature in the field—and where they saw the greatest benefits. What we learned was, when well utilized, loan scenarios not only help loan officers close more business, but improve productivity by reducing wasted efforts, too.
As a financial institution, South State Bank has to comply with fair lending practices, so its loan officers are diligent about responding to every customer inquiry or application quickly. However, they also spend a lot of valuable time on applications that never convert to actual loans.
“Like most financial institutions, we close about one-third of the files we start—so, we are constantly trying to improve our pre-qual experience to still engage with the prospect, but reduce the amount of time our loan officers and staff spend on loans that will never make it to the closing table,” explained Chris Shugart, CMB, Senior Vice President, Director of Mortgage Sales for South State Bank. “In the past, the only way loan officers could pre-qualify someone was to start an application, start a file and go through the pre-qualification process—which starts a lot of regulatory and operational clocks.”
LO Connect’s loan scenarios and opportunities enable loan officers using Encompass® Product & Pricing or Optimal Blue® to pull up different options, based on credit and other factors, before sending a file through the traditional workflow.
If a loan is feasible for that prospect, the loan officer moves the application through the workflow.
If that prospect ends up not being ready to buy just yet, the loan officer starts that person on a marketing campaign to keep that initial connection going strong.
The idea is to shorten the time spent on applications that aren’t going to convert, but ensure that the loan officer stays top-of-mind when that borrower can qualify or is ready to make a move.
Prevent lost opportunities
The fastest way to lose a qualified prospect is making that person wait. The ability to not only pull credit but present different loan scenarios, with cash to close details, at the first borrower-loan officer interaction immediately starts building trust.
“Any time you make prospects wait, the better the chance they’ll lose interest or get advice somewhere else,” said Tony Taranto, Lending Manager for Securityplus Federal Credit Union. “Presenting different loan scenarios at first contact shows our prospects not only how responsive we are, but that we’re looking out for their best interests. So, they have no reason to look anywhere else.”
Differentiate from “e-lenders”
Mortgages are scary, particularly for first-time buyers. Presenting different loan scenarios helps prospects compare the total loan package, instead of interest rates alone. The loan officer can take on a consultative role, from explaining lender paid versus non-lender paid mortgage insurance; as well as how property taxes and sales tax impact the total cost of the loan.
“We have first-time homebuyers who are going to do a lot of research and then reach out for help from an expert,” Shugart said. “The companies that are going to succeed with those kinds of customers are the ones that not only stay in touch, but continue to add value. LO Connect and the loan scenarios feature will help us add more value from that first interaction-on.”
In short, the technology enables loan officers to have a more relevant, more informative conversation with the prospective borrower—combining the speed of an online lender with the personal interaction of a traditional lender to gain a competitive advantage.