As a mortgage lender, your top priorities are providing exceptional service and attracting new clients. However, balancing these priorities can be tough, especially if you don’t have the right tools.
From helping generate new leads to strengthening your underwriting process, many mortgage lender tools can instantly upgrade your business operations. So, what tools should you invest in?
Check out this list of six must-have tools for mortgage lenders, like you, to see how you can begin leveraging new technologies and drive success.
#1 A Business Website
Regardless of the size of your brokerage, you need a professional web presence to attract clients online. According to the Mortgage Report, 92 percent of recent mortgage borrowers did online research before even speaking to a lender.1
If your business is on the smaller side, it’s even more important to have a website, since you have to compete against big banks and established lenders.
Your website is the most important marketing tool in your toolbox. Having a website can help you attract new leads by making you discoverable on Google. It can also serve as a central hub of information about your brokerage. Your business website should:
- Exude professionalism in its design and copy
- Describe your services in detail
- Showcase your expertise
- Highlight positive client reviews and testimonials
- Gather lead generation information through online forms
- Provide helpful information about the lending process
An effective business website can capture the attention of potential clients and win over their trust, all without you lifting a finger. Once your website has received some traction, you can use its analytics data to gain greater insight into who is searching for your services online.
As you know, the mortgage process involves a lot of paperwork and signatures. The more you can digitize, the better.
Employing e-signatures enhances your office efficiency and improves your clients’ experience, as many clients prefer e-signatures since they don’t involve the hassle of using a printer, fax machine, or scanner. They also don’t require a trip to your office. Clients can sign their documents digitally from the comfort of their own homes.
There are many e-signature tools you can choose from, including:
- Snapdocs (Solution for eClosings, hybrid closings, and wet closings).
#3 Certified Credit’s Customizable Mortgage Credit Reports
Credit reports are the cornerstone of the mortgage underwriting process. For this reason, you need robust credit reporting tools that offer you the most comprehensive view of your applicants.
The right credit reporting tools can help you make better lending decisions and reduce your risk. They can also save you time by filtering out applicants who fall short of your lending criteria early on in the process.
Certified Credit offers the following credit reporting tools, which you can tailor to your unique underwriting specifications:
- Tri-merge reports – learn about your applicants from all three credit bureaus
- Soft pull reports – find out which applicants prequalify with you affordably
- Mortgage-only credit reports – hone in on applicants’ mortgage history
- Business credit reports –gain insights into applicants’ business accounts
- Comparison reports — compare credit reports and identify their differences
- Employment reports — see applicants’ employment and criminal background history
- Smart Select reports — customize credit reports based on your unique criteria
- Certified debt tracker reports — monitor applicants’ undisclosed debt
With a complete collection of credit reports at your fingertips, you can swiftly assess applicants’ creditworthiness. In turn, you can approve the very best applicants and gain a competitive advantage.
#4 Credit Score Improvement Tools
Acquiring more clients as a mortgage lender means finding ways to say “Yes” to more applicants. You can approve more prospects and qualify them for better rates and terms by utilizing the following Certified Credit score improvement tools:
- Rapid Rescore — Many applicants have been working hard to increase their credit scores before applying for a mortgage. With Rapid Rescore, you can recalculate these applicants’ credit scores based on the recent improvements they’ve made. With easy access to these higher credit scores, you can offer more applicants favorable lending terms and win over their business.
- CreditXpert® Wayfinder — Where there’s a will, there’s a way. The CreditXpert Wayfinder gives your motivated applicants a list of quick and easy credit score improvement ideas. If these applicants choose to implement them, you will see an enhancement in their score and can offer them better rates and terms, all while converting them into loyal customers.
- CreditXpert® What-If Simulator — The CreditXpert What-If Simulator forecasts the impact of various changes to an applicant’s credit report. It gives you a glimpse into their future credit score. Based on these forecasts, you can determine which applicants are most worthwhile to take on as clients.
- CreditXpert Credit AssureTM — Take the guesswork out of your upfront process. CreditXpert Credit Assure works like an alert system built into your credit report, giving your team immediate insight to improvement potential on the horizon.
Credit score improvement tools like these can help you close more loans than you would otherwise. In turn, they enable you to grow your business without sacrificing your underwriting standards. Additionally, they position you as a trusted advisor for your clients, helping them gain more favorable rates and terms, driving retention and referral business.
#5 Fraud and Risk Mitigation Tools
Mortgage fraud is a pervasive problem. From document fraud to straw buyer schemes, it costs financial institutions billions of dollars.2
Thankfully, 70% to 80% of mortgage fraud is preventable if you employ the right early detection efforts.3 The following tools from Certified Credit can help you uncover mortgage fraud before it’s too late:
- ADV-120 Fraud Reports — ADV-120 fraud reports offer you instant insight into the fraud risk factors that exist within a mortgage application. These risk factors are based on discrepancies between the application’s information and public records.
- Wire Transfer Fraud Reports — To prevent wire transfer fraud, this two-tiered report validates an applicant’s bank account ownership and account status. It also provides you with details about the settlement company that was used for the transaction.
- Liens & Judgment Reports — This report searches through public records to find any liens or judgments against your applicants. It’s available in both FCRA and GBLA versions.
- 4506 Tax Transcripts — This tool enables you to verify applicants’ 1040s, W2s, 1099s, 1120s, 1065s, and other tax documents directly with the IRS.
- SSA89 Verifications — You can verify applicants’ social security numbers with the Social Security Administration using this helpful tool.
- Precise ID — Authenticating an applicant’s identity is an essential step in preventing mortgage fraud early on. Precise ID provides you with a detailed report on an applicant’s identity.
- ID Risk Review — This tool summarizes public record data relating to an applicant’s ID to ensure their ID is only associated with one person.
- Mortgage Participation Reports — This report lets you know if one of your applicants is on any of the government’s mortgage exclusion lists.
With so many powerful fraud prevention tools at your disposal, you can protect your mortgage business from unscrupulous actors and enjoy greater peace of mind. Learn more about mortgage fraud and how to detect it in our “70 Signs of Mortgage Fraud” article.
#6 Certified Credit’s In-the-Market Alerts
Cultivating a loyal client base can be challenging for mortgage lenders. In recent years, mortgage client retention has been at an all-time low. Only 18% of clients stay with the same loan provider post-refinance.4
To prevent losing the majority of your hard-earned business, you need a tool that can help you monitor your clients’ credit activity and let you know when they’re searching for a new mortgage. This way, you can reach out before they take out a mortgage on a new home or refinance their existing mortgage with someone else.
Our In-The-Market Alerts can help you do just that. In-The-Market Alerts monitor your existing client base’s tri-bureau credit activity. If any of this activity indicates that a client is in the market for a new mortgage, you’ll receive an alert. Once you get this alert, you can proactively position yourself as the best lender for the job.
Gain Access to a Robust Mortgage Lending Toolbox with Certified Credit
They say a man is only as good as his tools. This rule applies to mortgage lenders as well. With the six tools, you’ll be able to identify more lending opportunities, capitalize on them, and grow your mortgage business with ease.
In addition to the tools we’ve outlined already, you should also consider:
- Lead generation tools
- Third-party verifications
- Settlement services
With Certified Credit’s mortgage lender tools, you’ll have everything you need to grow your business and enhance its profitability. Reach out to us today to learn more.
1BusinessWire. Ellie Mae Announces Digital Mortgage ROI and Impact on Cost of Origination Study from Marketwise Advisors, LLC.
2Office of Justice Programs. Working Paper: Burning Down the House: Mortgage Fraud and the Destruction of Residential Neighborhoods.
3Van Education Center. Recognizing the signs of Mortgage Fraud.
4PR Newswire. Black Knight: Servicers Retained Just 18% of Customers Post-Refinance in Q1 2019, a 13-Year Low; Slight Rate Increase Reduces Refinanceable Population by 1 Million