By Dave Hershman
Special to MPA
What is your opinion of calling on accountants to get loans? I am having trouble breaking in with real estate agents.
--Larry from Texas
I will not address your comment about having issues with agents but instead focus on your main question regarding accountants. I believe that accountants are a very important "alternative" referral source-- both for refinances and purchases. This is especially true around tax time when high income renters are paying too much in taxes. However, let me address two issues. First, which accountants are you "calling" on? I am not in favor of cold calling accountants. I am in favor of getting introductions through your sphere. Start with your own accountant of course. Doing your own taxes? Big mistake for a loan officer because you also need to be referring business if you want referrals.
Secondly, don't be calling on accountants if you don't understand tax returns or don't understand the economics of homeownership. That includes tax deductions, leverage and inflation hedging. Think about it--if you were an accountant, would you want to refer business to a loan officer who does not know what a K-1 is and why it is important? I actually recommend that loan officers take tax preparation courses so they can not only learn more, but they can be in a class with potential referral sources. That is synergy.
Dave Hershman has been the leading author and a top speaker for the industry for decades with six books authored and hundreds of articles published. His website is www.originationpro.com. If you have a reaction to this commentary or another question you would like answered in this column? Email Dave directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.